First Published: 2009-10-27

Book smashes India's 'Islamic terrorism' myth

New book shows how network seeks to frame Muslims for many bombings in India.


Middle East Online

By M Zeyaul Haque - NEW DELHI

A new book curiously titled Who Killed Karkare? says a nationwide network of Hindutva terror that has its tentacles spread up to Nepal and Israel is out to destroy the India most Indians have known for ages and to remould it into some kind of Afghanistan under the Taliban.

The writer, a former IG Police of Maharashtra, SM Mushrif, has reconstructed a fearsome picture out of former Maharashtra ATS chief Hemant Karkare’s chargesheet against alleged Hindutva terrorists like Lt. Col. Purohit, Sadhvi Pragyasingh Thakur and others.

The chargesheet pointed towards a mind-boggling nationwide conspiracy with international support to destabilise the constitutional order and the secular democratic Indian state that upholds it, to be replaced by a Hindutva state run according to a new Constitution. For that the conspirators were prepared for a massive bloodbath, using bomb attacks on religious places to trigger that anti-Muslim holocaust.

Mushrif, who has over three decades of diligent policing behind him and whose feats include exposing the Telgi scam, has made an elaborate case out of nearly a dozen blasts over a large area of the country conducted by Hindutva terror groups of different stripes. His case: a section of India’s intelligence services, a miniscule group in the armed forces and a section of different state police forces have been compromised and infiltrated by these elements, a development that bodes ill for the future of the country.

In Hemant Karkare’s net (of investigations, of course) many big and small fishes of VHP, RSS, Bajrang Dal and Sanatan Sanstha (which has been found to be involved in Diwali-eve blasts in Goa last week) had been trapped. Serving and retired army officers, academics, serving and retired officials of India’s premier intelligence service were ensnared in Karkare’s fishing net. The menacing power of the latter groups, inspired by sustained anti-Muslim hate campaigns of the last six decades, gave the plot a sinister and highly destructive character.

Among the plans unearthed by Karkare was a blueprint for the assassination of 70 prominent Indians who could by a hindrance to the project of Hindutva. Interestingly, most of the persons marked for elimination would, naturally, be Hindus because it is they who primarily run the dispensation. The conspirators were also unhappy with organisations whose Hindutva they suspected to be less virulent than desired.

Mushrif, who very well knows the power of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) to make or mar lives and careers, says he is prepared to face the consequences of hostility of this power hub. He musters “evidence” to show that the IB has regularly been interfering with regular police investigations to let Hindutva terrorists slip out of the net and replace them with random Muslim youth. To fudge the issues further obliging police officers in the states would not mind exterminating a few Muslim youth to be branded posthumously as “terrorists”.

There are quite a few number of such cases where such extra-judicial killing of Muslim youth has turned out to be false police encounters. All this is done to cover tracks of Hindutva terror. Mushrif says a “Brahminist” network that has its origins in Maharashtra, and is closely knit across political parties, government services, including IB, and other vital sectors of life is behind the terror that seeks to destroy the secular, democratic state. He hastens to clarify that very few Brahminists are Brahmins. Many are from other high Hindu castes, some from middle and lower castes.

Most Brahmins are fair-minded and would not like to associate themselves with hate ideologies. Hemant Karkare, too, was a Brahmin, Mushrif says. So is Mushrif’s son-in-law.

It is pertinent to note that “Brahminism” and “Brahminical order” first appeared in Dalit protest vocabulary in the Dalit uprising movement in Maharashtra towards the turn of the 20th century. Mushrif, who appropriates part of this vocabulary for the present discourse, says that Maharashtra still remains the centre of this ideology that, among other things, has the dubious distinction of killing the Father of the Nation.

The power establishment that really runs the affairs of this country (Mushrif says it is not Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh or Rahul Gandhi) does not want to expose the Hindutva terrorists. One example is the blasts in Samjhauta Express, which the IB said was carried out by Pakistan’s ISI. Mushrif quotes a report in The Times of India that said, “the Centre had blamed the ISI on the basis of the IB’s findings.” However, during a narco-analysis test under Karkare, Lt. Col. Purohit had admitted having supplied the RDX used in the blast. The IB, which draws its power from its proximity to the Prime Minister (its director briefs the PM every morning for half an hour), did not want Karkare’s investigation that blew the cover off the IB’s shenanigans, to continue.

Once Karkare was removed from the scene, the IB moved in to fill his position with KP Raghuvanshi, a pliant police officer with extremely low credibility among Muslims for his record of letting off known Hindutva terrorirsts and implicating innocent Muslim youth even in bomb attack cases on mosques.

There are quite a few interesting vignettes here, like Raghuvanshi and Col. Purohit’s association with Abhinav Bharat in Maharashtra, whose hand was evident in a series of blasts across the country. It has old connections with men like Veer Damodar Savarkar (whose relative Himani Savarkar leads the Abhinav Bharat movement), Dr Munje, who led the Hindu Mahasabha, and other Hindutva luminaries. It is at the Bhonsala Military Academy run by these groups that Purohit trained police officers, including Raghuvanshi. Mushrif asks a pertinent question: Will Raghuvanshi pursue the investigation against Purohit, his guru? A plausible answer is, perhaps no. Already charges have been dropped by a special court under MCOCA against 11 accused, including Purohit, on the grounds of insufficient evidence produced in the court by the prosecution.

This was just the beginning of the undoing of Karkare’s painstaking investigation. Mushrif says slowly the system is working to undo all of Karkare’s work and let off the terrorists who over the years destroyed scores of lives and wreaked irreparable economic damage. The ATS team under Karkare had pointed out VHP leader Praveen Togadia’s role in the blasts. The ATS under Raghuvanshi dropped the investigation against him saying (please hold your laughter) they do not know who Togadia is!

A number of investigations have been thus sabotaged by the powers that be and the tracks of the Hinduta terrorists duly covered. The 319-page book is crammed with such information.

But what about who killed Karkare? Mushrif says two teams were at work on 26/11 ­– one which did the maximum damage, and was from outside. The smaller team took advantage of the confusion of the moment and acted only on the relatively small CST-CAMA-Rangbhavan stretch that killed Karkare. It was a desi unit that wanted Karkare and his men out of the way.


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