June 02, 2006

IB chief told Sudarshan: you and RSS under threat

2 weeks ago, in quiet meeting, IB chief told Sudarshan: you and RSS under threat
Shishir Gupta / Stavan Desai




NEW DELHI, nagpur, June 1:On May 15, exactly a fortnight before today’s terror attack bid at the RSS headquarters in Nagpur, RSS Sarsanghchalak K S Sudarshan had an unusual visitor at the Sangh shivir in Dombivili in Mumbai’s outskirts. He was Director, Intelligence Bureau, E S L Narasimhan, who had quietly flown in from Delhi.

While the UPA government is tight-lipped about the meeting, the DIB went to Mumbai to inform Sudarshan that the RSS headquarters and he, personally, were under threat from Islamic fundamentalists.

Cleared at the highest levels including National Security Advisor M K Narayanan, Narasimhan is said to have apprised Sudarshan of the fact that Central agencies were upgrading his security as well as that of the Nagpur headquarters.

Top government sources told The Indian Express that Narasimhan was flown to brief Sudarshan as intelligence inputs from across the western border indicated that the RSS leadership could be attacked by members of the Lashkar-e-Toiba.

That input came true in the wee hours of Thursday morning with three suspected LeT militants being killed by the police near the RSS Headquarters in Nagpur.

Although security agencies say they are still working to identify the module behind the attack, the fact is that investigators have been working for over two months trying to crack the terror network that they suspected had been tasked to strike the RSS headquarters.

Official sources said Narasimhan went to Mumbai after Firoz Ghanswala, resident of Bharuch, and Mohmmed Ali Chippa, resident of Ahmedabad, were arrested by the Special Branch of Delhi Police on May 9.

The police recovered large quantities of RDX that both of them claimed to have procured from across the border with the help of Azam Cheema, a Lashkar operational commander in Pakistan.

During interrogation, Ali is said to have revealed that RSS headquarters in Nagpur and its leadership were on the Lashkar hitlist. Sources say this has been the case for a while because of jehadis’ refrain—in their literature and websites—blaming the RSS and its affiliates for the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 and the 2002 Gujarat riots.

While Jaish-e-Mohammed has been targeting the Babri Masjid complex, the Lashkar has build modules in Maharashtra as confirmed by arrests in Aurangabad, Mumbai and Delhi

shishir.gupta@expressindia.com

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