After successfully getting one of India’s most wanted terrorists Syed Abdul Karim Tunda deported from the UAE, security agencies are increasingly hopeful of catching the biggest fish of them all — Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar.
Sources said with the US putting pressure on Pakistan and Indian security agencies tracking India’s most-wanted terrorist, Dawood is running out of safe havens.
The Congress-led UPA government is keen to nab Dawood as it could prove to be a game changer for the next Lok Sabha elections. “We may get him using the same channels like we did to get Tunda, suspected Indian Mujahideen co-founder Fasih Mohammed and Abu Jundal,” said a source.
Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif’s special envoy to India Shahryar Khan recently said that if Dawood was in Pakistan, he should be arrested as “we cannot allow such gangsters to operate from our country”.
Security analysts such as former RAW chief AS Dulat get positive vibes from Khan’s assertion though serving officials are not willing to read too much in Pakistan’s overtures. Having said that, nabbing Dawood with indirect help from Pakistan would pave the way for PM Manmohan Singh’s delayed visit there. He has been keen to visit Pakistan and rewrite relations between the two countries.
Pakistan’s help in netting Dawood would depend on how the relations between Sharif and the ISI and the army play out. The Pakistani army has been carrying out ceasefire violations and even entering Indian territory to kill Indian soldiers.
Many serving mandarins and former diplomats like G Parthasarthy take it as the Pakistani army’s indication to the civilian government not to get too cosy with India. But Dulat is not perturbed. “These, I believe, are not interconnected. Border tension can also be a coincidence,” Dulat said.
He said Sharif’s peace overtures should be given a chance. “He has been talking about having peace with India for 10 years. A mature handling of the situation by both the countries can help in turning the tables against terrorism.”