Former Mumbai police commissioner Rakesh Maria has claimed that the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) had planned to project the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack as a case of "Hindu terror" and Pakistani terrorist Mohammed Ajmal Kasab to die as Bengaluru's Samir Chaudhari.
In his memoir 'Let Me Say It Now', released on Monday, Maria mentioned about the investigation helmed by him in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack, which was planned by LeT and Pakistan hand was also unearthed.
According to excerpts from the book, (Pakistan's) ISI and LeT were striving to eliminate Kasab in the jail as he was the key evidence linking them with the attack and Dawood Ibrahim's gang was tasked with eliminating him.
While describing LeT's plan to project the 26/11 attack as "Hindu Terror", Maria wrote, "If everything went according to plan, Kasab would have died as Chaudhari and the media would have blamed 'Hindu terrorists' for the attack."
The terror organisation had also reportedly planted fake ID cards with Indian addresses on the terrorists, he mentioned.
On a photograph of Kasab released after the terror attack, Maria mentioned "it was the handiwork of central agencies. The Mumbai Police tried hard to not disclose any details to media fearing for the security."
In the photograph, Kasab was seen wearing a red thread on his right wrist, which is believed to be a sacred Hindu thread. This led many to believe the theory that the perpetrators were planning to blame the 26/11 attacks as 'Hindu terror'.
"There would have been screaming headlines in newspapers claiming how Hindu terrorists had attacked Mumbai. Over the top TV journalists would have made a beeline for Bengaluru to interview his family and neighbours. But alas, it had not worked that way and here he was, Ajmal Amir Kasab of Faridkot in Pakistan," Maria wrote in the book.
He also said that martyred Mumbai constable Tukaram Omble's heroic feat of capturing Kasab alive was key to foiling this plan.
According to the book, "Kasab joined the ranks of LeT to commit robberies and had nothing to do with jihad. Such, however, was the indoctrination, that Kasab was made to believe that Muslims were not allowed to offer namaaz in India."
He was, thus, shocked when his visit to a mosque near Metro cinema was facilitated, Maria mentions in the book.
According to the former police official, Kasab was given a week-long leave and Rs 1.25 lakh before being sent on the mission to strike Mumbai.
He (Kasab) gave the money to his family for his sister's wedding, he added.
In one of the most horrific terrorist attacks in the country's history, 166 people were killed and over 300 injured as 10 heavily-armed terrorists from Pakistan created mayhem in Mumbai on November 26, 2008.
Kasab, the lone terrorist captured alive, was hanged to death on November 21, 2012.