Earlier, despite Indian government's frenzied initiatives last week to cut through the legal and diplomatic protocol, the UAE authorities had stood their ground about extraditing him to India. While there are over 28 cases registered against Anees in India, including the Mumbai serial blasts, the Dubai police had insisted that he first stand trial for two cases registered in the UAE. The first related to a counterfeit currency racket in Dubai and the second a murder case.
CBI had been apprehensive and was trying to ascertain how wanted he was in the murder case as it is that which prevented Indian authorities to see or interview Anees. The cited case against Anees was the murder of rival gangster Irfan Goga (a former D Company henchman) in 1998. "Goga's wife had named Anees as a suspect at that time itself but he had managed to escape," says a CBI official.
Now it turns out that this is the loophole that was exploited to release Anees from UAE, soon after which
he was in Bahrain and then whisked away to Karachi with more than a little help from ISI.
Indian ambassador K.C. Singh's requests for appointments with the minister for external affairs of UAE have been stonewalled, and the Indian government view now is that the whole drama of his arrest and the talk of the murder case against him may have just been a ruse to get India to the negotiating table to clear "pending diplomatic issues" as soon after India ceded concessions -- more flights cleared for Emirates, President Kalam agreeing to visit UAE -- that the escape to Karachi took place.
Even earlier, Anees had been picked up by the UAE authorities in 1996 and then again in 1998 for separate offences. Both times, he managed to elude Indian law enforcement agencies.
Though an Interpol red corner notice (A-348/8/1993) was issued against Anees a year before he was first picked up in 1996, he has constantly managed to evade the net. Carrying a reward of Rs 10 lakh on his head, Anees is credited with controlling D Company's finances and the transfer of funds to its operatives through the hawala route.
Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed, also the defence minister of UAE, said to be close to Dawood, is suspected to have played a role, with more than a little help from a Pakistani diplomat and the CBI feels that the same nexus helped him on all the earlier occasions as well.
Significantly, this is in sharp contrast to the position UAE authorities took when they deported dons Aftab Ansari, Muthappa Rai and Raju Anathkath over the past year-and-a-half," as per the CBI.
In fact, the CBI is wondering if Dubai's 'cooperation' in the earlier cases had had anything to do with the fact that Ansari, Rai and Anathkath were all "inimical" to Dawood's (with ISI backing) business interests in the UAE.
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