9/11 WTC attack gave confidence to form IM: Yasin Bhatkal

The 9/11 twin tower attack in New York gave "confidence" to Yasin Bhatkal to establish dreaded terror outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM) and such was his `Jihadi` mindset that he was in the process of procuring nuclear warheads from Pakistan to strike at Surat in Gujarat.

PTI| Last Updated: May 23, 2014, 20:28 PM IST

New Delhi: The 9/11 twin tower attack in New York gave "confidence" to Yasin Bhatkal to establish dreaded terror outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM) and such was his `Jihadi` mindset that he was in the process of procuring nuclear warheads from Pakistan to strike at Surat in Gujarat.

This has emerged during the probe being carried out by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Special Cell of Delhi Police against Bhatkal and the investigators have filed two separate charge sheets before Delhi courts in this regard.
In his disclosure statement given before the Special Cell, which was filed in a court here recently, 31-year-old Bhatkal said that before the September 11, 2001 World Trade Centre (WTC) attack in New York, he had a "strong urge" to do `Jihad` but he used to feel that he was "incapable" to commit such acts.

"During my stay in Mumbai, the attack on New York twin towers in USA took place which shook the entire world and also my complete psyche and personality.
"Before 9/11, I had a strong urge to do something like `Jihad` but used to feel myself too incapable and short of resources to be able to bring about something significant. The 9/11 gave me confidence and strengthened my determination for `Jihad`," IM`s Indian chief Bhatkal said in his statement.

NIA, in its separate charge sheet filed before the court against Bhatkal and others, had said that IM co-founders Yasin and Riyaz Bhatkal, were planning to attack Surat with nuclear warheads and they were trying to procure these from Pakistan.

In its 277-page charge sheet, NIA said after Bhatkal and other IM men failed to carry out a series of bomb blasts in July 2008 in Surat and Ahmedabad, they started planning to procure nuclear warheads to target Surat.

Referring to the internet chats between the two top IM men, NIA said, "Yasin then asked Riyaz whether he had found nuclear bomb in Pakistan to which Riyaz denied and also said that if looked for properly, then everything was available in Pakistan.

"Yasin told him that Surat should be attacked with nuclear bombs. Yasin then requested Riyaz to look for nuclear bomb to attack Surat," it said.

In his disclosure statement given before the Delhi Police,
Bhatkal said that in his quest to achieve the goal of `Jihad`, he had met IM co-founders Riyaz Bhatkal and Iqbal Bhatkal, both of whom are absconding and are presently based in Pakistan.

"...During my quest to attain my goal of Jihad, I met Riyaz Bhatkal, Iqbal Bhatkal, Master Bashir among others. Then we started some serious efforts to consolidate ourselves and form a group as suggested by Master Bashir," Bhatkal said.

He disclosed that in the end of 2005, he had gone to Pakistan via Dubai to undergo training for making and using arms and ammunition on the instructions of Riyaz Bhatkal.

Bhatkal`s disclosure statement has been filed before the court by the Special Cell along with the supplementary charge sheet against Bhatkal and his close aide Asadullah Akhtar in connection with the September 19, 2010 Jama Masjid terror attack case in which two Taiwanese tourists had received bullet injuries.

In his disclosure statement, Bhatkal also said he was "involved in many bomb blast incidents in India on the direction of Riyaz Bhatkal".

NIA had arrested Bhatkal, wanted in over 40 terror cases and carrying a reward of Rs 35 lakh, and Akhtar from the Indo-Nepal border on August 28 last year.