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Lashkar funded Mumbai attacks with fake currency

By Vicky Nanjappa
September 11, 2009 19:41 IST
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Vicky Nanjappa continues his series on how fake currency is causing havoc in India.

Some of the money used to finance the terror attacks in Mumbai last November and the Indian Institute of Science in Bengaluru in December 2005 came via a fake currency racket, sources from the Intelligence Bureau and Central Bureau of Investigation have revealed.

Operatives in Dubai and Pakistan, backed by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence directorate, used fake currency to fund terror operations on Indian soil.

Sources in the investigation agencies said the Lashkar-e-Tayiba spent Rs 3.5 crore (Rs 35 million) on the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai, of which Rs 80 lakh (Rs 8 million) came from the fake currency racket.

The Lashkar, investigating agencies in Bengaluru said, spent Rs 50 lakh (Rs 5 million) on the Bengaluru attack, of which Rs 30 lakh (Rs 3 million) was derived from the fake currency racket.

Intelligence Bureau sources said Lashkar operatives were asked to raise funds for the Mumbai attacks, which they did through the hawala route with fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim's assistance, and through fake currency arranged by its operatives in Dubai.

The Lashkar asked Khalid Obaid and Abdul Azeez, both based in Dubai, to raise funds through fake currency for the Mumbai attacks. Fake currency worth millions of rupees was printed in Pakistan and sent to the duo in Dubai.

The fake currency was subsequently transferred to India and the money generated used for the terror attacks.

Azeez is presently in Omani police custody for his alleged role in terror attacks in that country.

The Intelligence Bureau is relying on Azeez to provide clues regarding the funding of the Mumbai attacks.

The IB believes that Azeez, whose mother hails from Maharashtra, was handpicked by the Lashkar for the assignment. Sabahuddin Ahmed, who currently faces trial for his role in the Mumbai attacks, told interrogators that the money used for the attacks was transferred to the Lashkar through online channels.

Read Vicky Nanjappa's specials: How ISI masterminds fake currency racket in India
Fake currency menace haunts security agencies
Fake currency: 'RBI, banks in denial mode'

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Vicky Nanjappa