Was Ishrat Jahan, the Mumbra girl who was gunned down by the Gujarat police in 2004, actually a member of the women’s wing of the dreaded Laskhar-e-Toiba (LeT)? The mystery further got complicated on Thursday, after Mumbai 26/11 attack accused-turned-approver David Headley deposed in open court that Jahan was indeed a member of the banned terror outfit.Headley, who has been appearing in a sessions court trying the key plotter Sayed Zaibuddin, informed the court that during one of his meeting with Zaki-Ur-Rehman-Lakhvi, the second-in-command in LeT, a mention was made by him about a botched up operation in India, where a woman member had been gunned down at a Naka. On his further asking about the incident to another LeT member Muzamil Bhat, he explained about the operation and also mentioned the name of the deceased woman as Ishrat Jahan, who was part of the suicide bomb squad.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, during the hearing, Headley did not remember the name of the deceased woman. It was on the multiple choice answers thrown to him by special public prosecutor Ujwal Nikam – who asked: “Was the name of the deceased member Noorjehan Begum, Ishrat Jahan, or Mumtaz” – that Headley said positive to the second option.Ishrat Jahan, 19, was shot along with three men in Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004, by the crime branch of the Gujarat police on the basis of inputs provided by the Intelligence Bureau (IB). At that time, the Gujarat police had claimed that all four people who had been shot were terrorists and were involved in a plot to kill Narendra Modi. The three men who were shot dead along with Ishrat Jahan were identified as Pranesh Pillai (alias Javed Gulam Sheikh), Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar. CBI investigations, however, concluded that the shootout was stage-managed.Further, in continuance to the disclosures of other operations being carried out by LeT inside India, apart from fighting India in Kashmir, Headley said he also heard of the 2002 attack on the Akshardham temple in Gujarat. “This he claimed was done to avenge the demolition of the 1992 Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.”Two fidayeens had then sprayed bullets from their AK-56 rifles and used hand grenades to kill 33 people and injure another 86 at Akshardham Temple before being killed by NSG commandos on September 25, 2002. Later, the Gujarat police arrested six locals, who were in 2014 acquitted of all charges by the Supreme Court.Headley also mentioned roles of other wanted named in the police report. A mention was made about wanted accused Sajid Mir who was mentoring Headley’s in his operations and how happy he was after hearing the media coverage of the Mumbai terror attack, so was he. The deposition will continue on Friday.

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Mumbra girl Ishrat Jahan was LeT suicide bomber: David Headley