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Saturday, 11 August 2012

From Today's Papers - 11 Aug 2012
Want to confess role in 26/11: Jundal

Mumbai, August 10
Abu Jundal, one of the handlers of the 26/11 terrorists, today expressed his desire before a metropolitan court to confess his complicity in the brazen attacks, a day after he was confronted with Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving assassin in the case.

The 30-year-old made a verbal plea before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate PS Rathod that he wanted to make a voluntary confession about his role in the attacks, sources in the Crime Branch, which is investigating the 26/11 case, said. The magistrate explained to him the procedure of recording the confession and also informed him that his confessional statement could be used against him.

Jundal, sources said, replied in the affirmative when asked if he wanted to make his confession voluntarily.

In keeping with legal provisions, Jundal was told by the court that he would be given time to think whether he wanted to give confession. He would be produced before the court after two days and his statement will be recorded if he still wants to make the confession, sources said.

Jundal, who was hitherto in the custody of the Crime Branch, would now be lodged in solitary confinement at Arthur Road Central to ensure he is not influenced by anyone.

Held on the charge of participating in 26/11 attacks conspiracy, Jundal was earlier brought to the Esplanade court amid tight security and litigants and the media were asked to leave the courtroom.

Jundal, a native of Beed district of Maharashtra, was arrested in the 26/11 case by Mumbai police after he was brought here from Delhi where he had been apprehended in another case after being deported from Saudi Arabia in June. — PTI

Court gives him 2 days

The 30-year-old told a Mumbai court that he wanted to make a voluntary confession about his role in the attacks
In keeping with legal provisions, Jundal was given time to think whether he really wanted to give confession
He would be produced again in court after two days and his statement recorded, if he still wants to make the confession
Till then, Jundal would be in solitary confinement to ensure he is not influenced by anyone
Navy looking for new choppers

New Delhi, August 10
The Indian Navy is looking at a new set of choppers and has asked global helicopter makers to submit their proposals. A tender has been floated by the Indian Navy for procuring 56 light utility helicopters (LUHs). These are expected to cost over Rs 4,000 crore and will replace the fleet of Cheetah and Chetak choppers based on a 1960’s model of European chopper.

Navy is looking at twin-engined choppers and has sent its request for a proposal to US firm Sikorsky, European consortium Eurocopter, Russian Kamov and Italy’s Agusta Westland. The Navy wants these helicopters should be capable of carrying out anti-submarine warfare (ASW) role and should be equipped with torpedoes and depth charges.

The Navy has specified that it wants choppers that figure in the 4.5 tonne category. These choppers could in future be used for anti-piracy and anti-terrorism operations. — TNS
Abu Jundal: Lashkar planning aerial attacks on Indian cities, has trained paragliders
Mumbai: Abu Jundal, the 26/11 handler who is in jail in Mumbai, has made some startling revelations to the Mumbai Police. Sources say Jundal has revealed that terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba is planning to carry out aerial attacks on Indian cities and has trained para-gliders for this. He has reportedly also told them that he had himself seen 150 parachutes sealed in boxes in Muzzafarabad in Pakistan occupied Kashmir in 2010.

Yesterday, Jundal recorded his confession of his role in India's worst-ever terror attacks, in which 166 people were killed. His statement was recorded before a magistrate in Mumbai, which means it can be treated as evidence in court.

Jundal, who was deported from Saudi Arabia to India in June, could help connect the dots between the attacks in Mumbai and the men who planned them across the border in Pakistan.

That is one of the reasons why Jundal was taken for the second time in 24 hours to another jail where Ajmal Kasab is kept in a bulletproof cell with an underground tunnel that is used to transport him to court. As Kasab and nine other young Pakistani men shattered Mumbai over a period of 72 hours, they were guided in their murderous mission by Jundal and five others stationed at a control room in Karachi.

After the Maharashtra state government permitted the Mumbai Police on Thursday to question Kasab, the two men were brought together at the Arthur Road jail on Wednesday evening. Press Trust of India says Deputy Police Commissioner (Crime Branch) Ambadas Pote asked the terrorists a series of questions who sat facing each other while security cameras recorded their session. The interrogation was reportedly stopped while the two offered evening prayers.

According to police sources, Kasab identified Jundal as a handler. Jundal has already told interrogators that in the days before Kasab and the others set sail for Mumbai, he coached them in Hindi and helped familiarise them with the landscape they would relentlessly plunder.

Jundal identified Kasab as one of the 10 men who was deputed to execute the plan that had been engineered by Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, Jamaat-ud-Dawa head Hafiz Saeed, and others. India has said Jundal's information, shared first with interrogators in Delhi, confirms its repeated allegations that the 26/11 attacks were facilitated by state support in Pakistan. Islamabad has steadfastly refuted the charges.

Sources had said the police wanted to study the differences and discrepancies in the accounts of Jundal and Kasab about the planning and execution of the 26/11 attacks.

Jundal, whose real name is Zabiuddin Ansari, belongs to Maharashtra. In 2006, he was wanted in India for alleged links to terrorists, but escaped to Bangladesh and then to Pakistan. After 26/11, he was asked by Lashkar commanders to move to Saudi Arabia and entered the country with a Pakistani passport. US intelligence officials intercepted phone calls and Facebook accounts he employed to identify funding and new recruits. The US alerted India, and the two countries lobbied hard to persuade Saudi Arabia to send him to Delhi.
Indian Navy to purchase 56 Light Utility Helicopters
The Indian Navy has begun the process for the acquisition of 56 Light Utility Helicopters (LUH), expected to cost some $700 million.
The Navy has been looking to replace its ageing LUHs ever since 2007, but the approval from the defence authorities were obtained just now. The latest move by the Navy comes even as the Indian Army and the Air Force (IAF) are nearing the finalization of their helicopter acquisition deals. A bidding process is currently ongoing, for the purchase of 197 LUHs, destined for the Army and the IAF.

Naval authorities confirmed that they are about to invite the bids for 56 twin-engine Naval Utility Helicopters, from local as well as foreign helicopter manufacturers. The new LUHs will replace the ageing helicopters currently operated by the Navy, such as the HAL Chetak (Alouette III) and the HAL Cheetah (Alouette II). The older naval LUHs were manufactured by the government owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, with license from the French aircraft manufacturer AĆ©rospatiale. HAL is likely to bid for the contract this time also.

Other than the HAL, many of the foreign helicopter manufacturers are also reported to be interested in winning the contract. According to the Indian naval officials, international firms like the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation of USA, European helicopter manufacturer Eurocopter, the Anglo-Italian helicopter company AgustaWestland, and the Russian aircraft designer Kamov Corporation have shown their interest in the project.

According to the Indian authorities, the naval LUHs will be operating from both the onshore locations, and onboard the naval warships. In 2008, the Indian Armed Forces had started the acquisition process for another batch of LUHs, destined for the Indian Army and the IAF. The bidding process is currently ongoing, for the delivery of 133 helicopters for the Army, and a total of 64 for the IAF. The Eurocopter Fennec AS550-C3 is currently competing with the Kamov Ka-226 “Sergei” to win the contract.
Relatives suspect foul play in army jawan's suicide
Indian Army jawan V Arun, who committed suicide in Kashmir early this week, was cremated at his hometown in Killimannor near Thiruvananthapuram on Friday morning.

The body was first placed at the school where he had studied before being cremated.

Arun was attached to the 16th Light Cavalry armoured regiment and posted in Samba district in Jammu and Kashmir. He had shot himself using his service weapon, allegedly over being denied leave.

His father Vishwamohanan Pillai said after they heard that their son had committed suicide, Arun's wife had revealed that he was undergoing tremendous emotional strain.

"We came to know that three hours before he took away his life, he spoke to his mother and said that he will come for Onam vacation (in the last week of August)," Pillai said.

The parents have demanded an enquiry into the incident.

"We suspect that his death is suspicious and only a proper investigation will reveal if it was a suicide or murder because he said there were lot of issues in their unit and he was being hounded by senior officials," added Pillai.

The army has ordered a court of inquiry into the suicide. Army sources have blamed the incident on shortage of officers. While 20 officers are needed per unit, only nine are available, the sources said.

Defence Minister A.K. Antony has sought a detailed report on the incident.

According to sources, jawans and officers of 16th Light Cavalry were allegedly involved in a verbal confrontation after Arun committed suicide.
Jawan killed in bid to foil LoC infiltration
An Army jawan was killed while foiling an infiltration bid from across the Line of Control (LoC) in Gurez sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipore district overnight, officials here said on Thursday.
The brief exchange of small arms fire has been reported from the area close to R.C. Post on the Indian Army side along the de facto border around midnight on Wednesday night. Brigadier K.J.S. Dhillon at the Army’s 15 (Chinar) Corps headquarters here told this newspaper that the infiltrators were challenged by alert Indian troops before they could breach the LoC fence. He identified the slain jawan as Rifleman Chander Singh of 36 Rashtriya Rifles and said that the search of the area was underway. “We’ve found a warlike store left behind by the group of armed men which attempted to infiltrate into our side. The terrain of the area is very difficult and the details of the encounter and subsequent actions are still emerging,” the officer said. Defence spokesperson Lt. Col. J.S. Brar added, “Our alert boys at the forward post detected some suspicious movement during the night. When they challenged them, the infiltrators started firing in which a rifleman was killed. But his colleagues forced the infiltrators to make a quick retreat into PoK territory.”
The spokesperson also said that a pistol and a grenade were found at the site of the clash later. He did not know if the infiltrators also suffered any casualties as they had withdrawn from the scene.
Meanwhile, Army has reported yet another ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops in Krishnaghati sub-sector of Poonch district. It said in Jammu on Thursday that the Pakistani troops targeted several Indian posts with small arms fire late Wednesday night. It added that the firing that violates the November 2003 ceasefire agreement between the two sides came from Pakistan posts of Daku, Shiv and Battal on Indian posts of Kripan, Kranti and Kranti 1 between 10.15 and 10.30 pm on Wednesday and against around midnight which continued for about 35 minutes.
India test-fires nuclear capable Agni-II missile
Sharpening its missile teeth, India on Thursday successfully test-fired its medium range nuclear capable Agni-II missile with a strike range of 2000km as part of a user trial by the Army from the Wheeler Island off Odisha coast. "The trial of the surface-to-surface missile was conducted
from a mobile launcher from the Launch Complex-4 of Integrated Test Range (ITR) at around 8.48am," defence sources said.

Describing the launch as a complete success, ITR Director MVKV Prasad said, "All mission parameters were met during the trial of the indigenously developed missile."

Agni-II Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) has already been inducted into the services and today’s test was carried out by the Strategic Forces Command (SFC) of the Army with logistic support provided by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

"The 2000km range versatile missile, already inducted and part of countries arsenal for strategic deterrence, was launched as a training exercise by the armed forces," a DRDO scientist said.

The two-stage missile equipped with advanced high accuracy navigation system, guided by a novel scheme of state of the earth command & control system was propelled by solid rocket propellant system, he said.

The entire trajectory of the trial was tracked by a battery of sophisticated radars, telemetry observation stations, electro-optic instruments and naval ships located near the impact point in the down range area of the sea.

The 20-metre long Agni-II is a two-stage, solid-propelled ballistic missile. It has a launch weight of 17 tonnes and can
carry a payload of 1000kg over a distance of 2000km.

The state-of-the-art Agni-II missile was developed by Advanced Systems Laboratory along with other DRDO laboratories and integrated by the Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL), Hyderabad, the sources said.

Agni-II is part of the Agni series of missiles which includes Agni-I with a 700km range, Agni-III with a 3,000km range, Agni-IV and Agni-V.

The first prototype of Agni-II missile was carried out on April 11, 1999.

Though trial conducted on May 19, 2009 and the first night trial on November 23, 2009 from Wheelers Island could not meet all the parameters, all other trials including the last one carried out on September 30, 2011 from the same base were successful.
August 10, 2012
By administrator

Srinagar, Aug 9 (Kashmir Voice): An Indian personnel committed suicide by shooting himself with his service rifle inside his unit at Maheshpura Barrack in Samba. Although an official inquiry has been instituted to ascertain the cause of the death yet it is the psychological pressure arising out of guilt while operating against an armless population which results in such deaths in occupied Kashmir, as has been shown in earlier studies on the subject.

The incident raised the number of such deaths amongst the Indian security forces personnel to 248 since January 2007 in the occupied territory. KASHMIR VOICE

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