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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Warning and Preparation

I realize the top tier of Maharasthra/Mumbai Anti-Terror Squad (profile of the chief: Sri Hemant Karkare) died last night in the battle with terrorists who are still rampaging Mumbai. (I noticed that while the terrorists were carrying AK47s, few policemen had semi-automatic rifles while most had old WWI-type single/double shot rifles - standard issue to police in India. While terrorists probably practice everyday, how often do the police, even the ATS, practice shooting?) Surely they were brave to lead their police corp from the front. But what exactly did they do to mitigate the increasing and aggressive threats after each attack, five so far (until the current carnage) this year, from the terrorist group Indian Mujahideen?

Here was the warning:

The IM, in an email sent out in September, had warned the ATS against harassing Muslims in Mumbai and said that it was closely watching every move made by the squad.

In the email, the IM stated, "You ( the ATS) should know that your acts are not at all unnoticed; we are keeping an eye on you and just waiting for the right time to execute bloodshed. We are aware of your recent raids at Ansarnagar, Mograpada in Andheri and the harassment and trouble you created for the Muslims."

"You threatened to murder them and you even misbehaved with the Muslim women and children," the email alleged.

"If your arrogance has reached this degree and if you think that you can scare us by your stunts, then let the IM warn the people of Mumbai that the ATS will be responsible for the deadly attacks on Mumbaikars in the future."

Here is how Mumbai/Maharasthra Anti-Terror Squad prepared to deal with those threats:
Mumbai : The Anti-Terrorist Squad on Wednesday said its failure to get police custody of Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur among other accused in the Malagaon blast case from the MCOCA court is a setback which will slow down the investigation.

"Police custody would have helped investigations to proceed faster but still we will see how best to deal with it in a legal way," ATS Chief Hemant Karkare said in a TV channel....

The Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) unit on Wednesday searched the residential premises of the Malegaon blast accused Lt Col Srikant Prasad Purohit, booked under the MCOCA, in Pune.

"It was a routine search," an ATS officer said but declined to elaborate on the purpose behind the move.

If there was ever a case to show how reactionary Indian law enforcement and political establishment is, this has to be it.