Armed with disclosures from Mumbai terror attack scout David Coleman Headley, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had apparently informed the Intelligence Bureau (IB) that Ishrat Jahan was a Lashkar-e-Taiba suicide bomber.
Following his arrest in September 2009, Headley had told the FBI that Muzammil, the so-called commander of Pakistan-based LeT terrorist group, had recruited Ishrat.
Headley’s claim before the US agency is in focus at a time when the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the IB are locked in a tussle over the veracity of intelligence inputs that led to encounter killing of Ishrat and three others.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) — which questioned Headley in 2010 — however, makes no mention of his revelations on Ishrat in its 119-page report.
Though the NIA remains tight-lipped on Headley’s Jahan disclosure, sources said the agency did not mention it in the report because it was hearsay.
Official sources said the IB, in a letter to the CBI on February 28, 2013, made it clear the FBI had conveyed that Headley disclosed he was introduced Muzammil by top Lashkar commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi. The FBI communicated it was Zaki who told Headley about a female suicide bomber named Ishrat Jahan.
The CBI’s FIR filed in the Ishrat case on December 16, 2011, said there was no evidence to substantiate “certain news reports” on Headley’s revelations and that Jahan was part of a terror network.