Mumbai: The special court in Mumbai conducting trial in 2008 Mumbai terror attacks case on Friday witnessed high drama as Pakistani-American terrorist David Headley, who is deposing as a witness in the case, was annoyed with a number of questions asked by defence and answered sarcastically and even told the defence lawyer in Urdu that he was asking “idiotic” questions.
On a series of questions over his plea agreement with US authorities, Headley said he was not aware of terms because he had left it to his attorney and was informed about conditions only at the end. However, when defence lawyer Abdul Wahab Khan insisted that he pleaded guilty only after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agreed to accept certain conditions put by him, including that he would not be extradited to India, he said, “I was not present (when conditions were discussed with the FBI) I don’t know.”
He also said, “Mein samjha tha mujhe government ki behalf par gawahi dena hai. Mein bahut kharab insaan hun me ye maan gaya hun. Aap phir se saabit karna hai to phir maan leta hun.” (I thought I have to testify on behalf of the government. I have accepted that I am a very bad man. You want to prove it again I am accepting it again.”
At one point when the defence lawyer claimed Headley was treated for mental illness because he was suffering from ‘mix personality disorder’ and was in a rehab centre for a year, he said it was not true, adding, “Ye kya kya cheezein mere khate me daal rahe ho Khan Sahab?” (What kind of things you are putting in my account Mr Khan?)
According to Headley he never met the 10 attackers involved in the 26/11 attacks but he did see the photograph of Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone 26/11 attacker who was caught alive and later hanged, and had identified his picture in court. On this issue advocate Khan said Headley had addressed Kasab as Rehmatullah Alaih though this term cannot be used for a terrorist. However, Headley said this is a prayer and could be used for anybody.
The defence on Friday put up a few completely new theories as suggestions to Headley. One of them was that during trial in a US court he had identified his own voice, which was amongst the handlers who were giving instructions to 26/11 attackers. Another was that Headley himself was present in the control room in Karachi that was managing the attacks. Headley denied both the suggestions and also said that he is ready to give his voice sample, which would prove if he was there in control room or not.
Another claim made by the defence was that the FBI had sought Headley’s assistance in locating 9/11 attackers and that he had traced them. However, Headley denied this and said he was never asked anything about 9/11.
On many questions Headley said the question asked by defence lawyer was ‘ridiculous’ and ‘baseless’....