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In A First, NIA Puts Pakistani Diplomat On 'Wanted List', To Seek Interpol Red Corner Notice

DIVYIA ASTHANA | 1
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| April 9 , 2018 , 12:15 IST

Around 2 months after initiating proceedings, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday put a Pakistani diplomat on its 'wanted' list and also sent a request to Interpol seeking a Red Corner Notice (RCN) against him.

The diplomat Amir Zubair Siddiqui has become the first Pakistani diplomat to be put on the NIA's ‘wanted’ or against whom an Interpol RCM has been sought by India.

Siddiqui, who was posted as a visa counsellor in the Pakistani High Commission in Sri Lanka's Colombo, has been included in the list along with 2 other Pakistani officers for conspiring to launch 26/11-type attacks South India in 2014. Another 4th Pakistani officer posted in the high commission in Sri Lanka is also said to be involved in the conspiracy.

The NIA claimed that the targets for the 26/11-type attacks were the US consulate in Chennai the Israeli consulate in Bengaluru, the Eastern Naval Command headquarters in Visakhapatnam and various ports.

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The NIA reported that the Pakistani officers serving in Colombo from 2009 to 2016 had planned to attack vital installations in Chennai and other critical areas in south India with the aid of agents, including Sri Lankan national Muhammed Sakir Hussaien. Agencies were able to arrest 3 other agents conspiring with Siddiqui, namely Arun Selvaraj, Sivabalan and Thameem Ansari.

According to the NIA, Siddiqui and the other Pakistani officers after recruiting the agents instructed them to collect information and pictures of defence installations, nuclear establishments and movement of arms. The Pakistanis also reportedly asked the agents to steal laptops of senior Indian Army officers and supply fake Indian currency notes.

Although the NIA charge-sheeted Siddiqui in February, the other 3 officers have not yet been identified. Two of the others put on the list include Pakistani intelligence officer known as ‘Vineeth’, and another official codenamed ‘Boss alias Shah’. The accused have, however, reportedly been repatriated to Pakistan.

The investigators were helped in nailing the Pakistani officers by the US, which shared key information with India on the case.