NIA team set to question Lashkar operative in France

Vicky Nanjappa

Kochi, Dec 7: The Indian agencies may soon get to question a Lashkar-e-Tayiba operative who has been imprisoned in France. This development comes just days after a team of French officials questioned an Islamic State operative at a jail in Kerala.

The National Investigation is likely to question Muhammad Usman Ghani, a bomb maker who is part of the Lashkar-e-Tayiba. He was arrested in France for his alleged role in the Paris attack. The French authorities have accused him being one of the conspirators of the Paris attack.

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Earlier this week, a team of the French anti-terror agency arrived in Kerala to question an ISIS operative in connection with the 2015 Paris attacks that had claimed 130 lives. The team questioned Subhani Haha Moideen, who is currently under the custody of the National Investigation Agency. The team arrived after an NIA court in Kochi granted permission to question Subhani. It may be recalled that Subhani had revealed that he knew the terrorists who carried out the Paris attack inside a theatre in 2015.

NIA sources tell OneIndia that they would want to question Ghani to find out how many persons from India have joined the ISIS. Further the officials would also look to get information as to how many Indian operatives have joined the Lashkar-e-Tayiba abroad.

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The French team was granted access to question Subhani under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty signed by India and France. Following this a Letter Rogatory was issued by the NIA Court in Kochi to a court in France seeking access to Ghani, so that he could be questioned by the NIA.

India has a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty with 39 countries. The one with France was signed in 2005.

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