Only one of the two accused arrested for plotting attacks at the ONGC headquarters in Bandra, Thakkar Hall in Borivli, two theatres in Bandra and Mangaldas Market in south Mumbai was in touch with Bashir Khan, an accused in the 1993 serial blasts who had allegedly instructed them to carry out the strikes.
Abdul Latif (29), a Behrampada resident, was the one who was constantly in touch with Khan, whom he and co-accused Riyaz Ali, a Dahisar resident, referred to as ‘uncle’, the charge sheet filed against them by the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has said.
The two were arrested by the ATS on March 14 this year and were allegedly told by the ‘uncle’ to recruit young boys, send them to Pakistan for arms training and to carry out terror acts in India.
ATS also claimed to have recovered cans of fuel and cell phones containing a Pakistan number from the two.
They have been booked under various sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and Sections 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house etc) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.
According to transcripts that are part of the charge sheet, ‘uncle’ directed Latif at every step, whether it was buying a new SIM card or selection of targets.
According to the statement of a witness, Ali looked up to Osama bin Laden and gangster Dawood Ibrahim. He would sit glued TV sets whenever there was anything on Laden or Dawood, the witness has said.
The witness has said Ali would address Laden as ‘Laden Chacha’ and call him an intelligent man and scientist who had “shaken the US.”
He would say Laden was his ideal and claim that Dawood was working for the Muslim community, the witness said.