Free Press Journal

LeT listed Ishrat’s name in its martyr’s list: G.K. Pillai


New Delhi: Former Home Secretary G.K. Pillai on Thursday said it was a matter of investigation whether Ishrat Jahan was a terrorist or not, but added that her name was mentioned in the martyr’s list of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

Speaking exclusively to ANI, Pillai said it was a matter of investigation whether Ishrat was involved or an unwitting player.

“There was no direct evidence, except that LeT did put her name on the website and later on withdrew it, so I said maybe she was unwitting player.”

“She was definitely part of the group which went round India and finally ended up in Gujarat with plot to take violent action against leaders. So the real issue is whether it was a real encounter or whether it was a fake encounter,” he added.

The former home secretary, however, said that no conclusion should be drawn from David Headley’s statement.

Testifying via video-link from the US, main conspirator of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, Headley picked up Ishrat’s name when quizzed by Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam about a ‘botched up operation’ mentioned to him (Headley) by LeT commander Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi and said that the 19-year-old girl was an LeT operative.

However, Ishrat Jahan’s lawyer Vrinda Grover said that Headley’s version was not evidence as per Indian law as he was given a ‘multiple choice question’ by a ‘Padma Shri’ lawyer, which was downplayed by Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam.

Ishrat, who was from Mumbra in Mumbai, was shot dead along with three men in Gujarat in 2004 by police officers, who claimed that they were terrorists involved in a plot to kill Narendra Modi, then the chief minister.