Chicago, USA. Impressed with India’s performance on getting vital details like choice of biryani and books terror accused Ajmal Amir Kasab prefers, US intelligence agencies too are keen to spend some money on getting similar details from David Coleman Headley and Tahawwur Hussain Rana, currently under trial for involvement in suspected terror activities across the world.
“We might have found out information like involvement of elements of Pakistani establishment in terror activities, but we don’t know yet if Headley likes McChicken Spicy or Burger King,” CIA officer Stephen Black said with a clear disappointment in his tone, “Compare that with the information India has been able to extract from Kasab in the trial going on there.”
Realizing that a poor country like India spent at least 110 million rupees to know about Kasab’s taste-buds and body-language, CIA has asked Obama administration to sanction at least 10 million USD on a similar project to find out if Rana prefers Mutton Rogan Josh over Chicken Lollypop.
“Those millions of rupees were just one bill that a security organization submitted, imagine other expenses involved in the trial like salaries of lawyers, jail authorities, investigation agencies, and of course, food bills,” Black said, “An estimate of 10 million USD is very modest and we should get it.”
When asked what they would do with such pieces of information, the CIA officer thought a little and then said, “Indian authorities have been asking for access to Headley for some time now, maybe they were looking for such information from him too. They can get it from us for a just a fraction of their cost. But they need to tell us how will pay the bill.”
Back in India, Maharashtra government had clarified again that they won’t be solely paying the bill for any information on Headley or other issues related to Mumbai terror attacks.
“We are no longer in this bill payment business. In fact, only yesterday I had written to our Prime Minister requesting him to talk to his Pakistani counterpart to get Kasab transferred to the Abbottabad jail,” Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil said, as he feared more bills with Kasab’s trial going to higher courts.
“I can also talk to my contacts in Pakistan,” Patil added, “But I’d prefer PM to take it on his level.”
“The decision has been made to save the country’s taxpayers’ money,” clarified Patil, who had earlier resigned as state Home Minister after Mumbai terror attacks took place, “Besides, while in Abbottabad there is a realistic chance that Kasab will be cleaned up by the US forces.”
(with inputs from Ankur Nigam)