Fourth case in New York naming ISI in Mumbai attacks
In the fourth such case, an American survivor of the 2008 Mumbai attacks has filed a lawsuit against ISI officials, including its chief Ahmed Shuja Pasha, along with leading LeT figures, charging the Pakistani spy agency of being involved in the planning and execution of the terror strike.Updated: Aug 22, 2011 12:48 IST
In the fourth such case, an American survivor of the 2008 Mumbai attacks has filed a lawsuit against ISI officials, including its chief Ahmed Shuja Pasha, along with leading LeT figures, charging the Pakistani spy agency of being involved in the planning and execution of the terror strike.
The case filed in New York city against the ISI chief by Linda Ragsdale on August 12 prompted the court to issue summons to the ISI and the officials named, following which it was decided to merge all the four cases in the city.
Kevin J Wash, of the Locke Lord Bissell and Liddell, represented ISI, and asked the court to consider the same response as submitted in the other three cases.
Besides Pasha, and other ISI officials, the case names Lashkar-e-Taiba leaders behind the Mumbai terror attacks --Hafiz Mohammed Saeed, Zaki ur Rahman Lakhvi, Sajid Mir and Azam Cheema -- as the defendants.
A resident of Tennessee, Ragsdale was shot on her back by one of the LeT terrorist at the Oberoi Trident hotel in Mumbai. She, however, survived that attack.
"During the planning and execution of the Mumbai attack, defendants ISI, Pasha, (Nadeem) Taj, (Major) Iqbal and (Major Samir) Ali (as well as other officials, agents and employees of ISI) were extreme and outrageous.
"This extreme and outrageous conduct included, but was not limited to foreseeing that plaintiff Ragsdale would be irreparably traumatised when hostages at the Oberoi Trident Hotel, such as plaintiff Ragsdale, would be shot," said the complaint filed on behalf of Ragsdale. Ragsdale seeks a compensation of a minimum of $75,000 from the ISI.
The complaint filed by eminent New York attorney, James P Kreindler, on behalf of Ragsdale has demanded a trial by jury. Kreindler is representing the American victims of 26/11 in the other three cases as well.
"On and prior to November 26, 2008, the ISI, Pasha, Taj, Iqbal and Ali (as well as other officials, agents and employees of the ISI) acted to advance the goals of LeT, Saeed, Lakhvi, Cheema and Majid to terrorise, kill and hurt, among others, United States citizens (which conducted violated, among other things, United States statues prohibiting international acts of terrorism) by aiding and abetting the planning and execution of the Mumbai attacks," the complaint said.
Soon after Ragsdale filed her complaint, US District Judge Dora L Irizarry in the Eastern District of New York issued summons to the ISI, LeT and others named in case.
Responding on behalf of ISI, Kevin J Wash, told that court that all the four cases be clubbed together. The other three cases are Rosenberg et al vs Lashkar-e-Taiba, Scherr vs Lashkar-e-Taiba and Chroman vs Lashkar-e-Taiba.
In a letter dated August 15, Wash said he represents ISI and its current Director General, Pasha, and its former chief, Nadeem Taj.
Attorneys of ISI and Ragsdale informed the court that they have agreed that all the four cases be clubbed together.
In her order dated August 18, Irizarry stipulated that all the four cases be clubbed together.
"However, defendants' request that the court consider the motion to dismiss as fully briefed in relation to the Ragsdale case is premature as defendants have not even appeared in the new case.
"The application is denied without prejudice to renew once the defendants have appeared in the Ragsdale matter," the court order said.
First Published: Aug 22, 2011 12:45 IST