The Shiv Sena on late Tuesday admitted the existence of a party worker by the name of Rajaram Rege, whom Pakistani American and terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative David Coleman Headley had named in a US court.
The development came hours after the Shiv Sena had denied that there was anybody in the party by the name working as a public relations officer.
Party spokesperson and MP Sanjay Raut, who had earlier in the day denied the existence of any person by the name in the party, now said that there is indeed a party activist called Rajaram Rege, who is working in one of the party's wings.
"But it is not as if he is a wrong kind of a person. We are not going to question him, that is the job of the authorities concerned," Raut said.
Headley had said in his deposition as a prosecution witness in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack trial in a Chicago court that he had visited Shiv Sena Bhavan in Dadar in central Mumbai, and met Rege, whom he identified as the party's PRO
The Sena had promptly dismissed the contention.
Raut added that Rege was not a PRO - as claimed by Headley - since there is no such post in the party.
"However, many people, including foreigners call up from the US or other places for many reasons, including some who want to do research studies on the party. We are very careful with foreigners and do a proper background check before we entertain them," Raut said.
But he admitted that Headley's true intentions were revealed only after the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack.
Queried on the issue earlier in the day, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan told reporters that the state government would seek necessary information from the central government.
"The trial is being conducted in United States and whatever information needs to be shared, we will get it officially. After we get the necessary inputs, we shall decide what needs to be done," Chavan said.
A co-accused in the Mumbai terror attack along with his old friend Tahawwur Rana, a Canadian of Pakistani origin, Headley said he had conducted a recce of India's atomic installation, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre near Mumbai, and also visited the Shiv Sena offices at Dadar.
Headley, who is behind bars and has admitted to being one of the planners of the Mumbai terror attack, created a sensation by naming Rajaram Rege before Judge Harry D Leinenweber conducting the trial in the Chicago court.