`Karkare talked of threat to life two hours before 26/11 attacks`

Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh said the then Maharashtra ATS chief Hemant Karkare had called him two hours before 26/11 attacks.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh is reported to have made a startling disclosure in connection with the Mumbai terror attacks, saying Hemant Karkare – the then Maharashtra ATS chief – had called him two hours before the 26/11 attacks started on November 26 claiming his life was “under threat”.

Karkare was killed in the terrorists’ firing near Cama Hospital. According to Digvijay, as reported by The Indian Express, Karkare told him during the telephonic conversation that those who were not happy with his investigation into the Malegaon blast in which Hindu extremists were accused, could kill him.

Within days of the 26/11 attacks, the then minorities minister AR Antulay had also claimed that Karkare could have been a victim of “terrorism or terrorism plus something”. He had to later quit under pressure from various quarters for his remarks.

“On November 26, 2008, at 7.00 pm, just about two hours before the attacks in Mumbai started, Hemant Karkare, the slain ATS chief rang me on my mobile and told me how his family and his life were blighted by constant threats from people annoyed by his investigations into the Malegaon blasts,” Digvijay told the newspaper.

“Woh pareshaan the (he was worried), and he told me he was trying to trace the calls, but was depressed and worried by threats and personal attacks made in their newspapers. Karkare also told me that he was hurt that in a paper, the mouthpiece of a Hindu right-wing organization, allegations were being made that my son was minting money in Dubai, when in reality he was only a school student in Mumbai.”

“I was so shocked and demoralized on being told of his death in the attacks in Mumbai late at night on November 26, that my initial reaction was, ‘Oh God, they have killed him.’ It was only later that I found out about other events taking place in the city on that dreadful day,” the Congress general secretary, who has courted controversy in the past too with regard to his remarks on terror attacks in the country, said.

Digvijay had shared these revelations on December 6 with the audience at a function to launch ‘RSS ki saazish — 26/11?’ authored by Aziz Burney, editor-in-chief of an Urdu newspaper.