Now, ISI training ultras in magic tricks to evade arrest
6 July 2002
The Daily Excelsior
Jammu: In an attempt to evade their arrest, the Pakistan-sponsored terrorists are being trained by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in magic tricks. This was one among a series of disclosures made by Lashkar-e-Toiba’s hitman Zulfikar alias Abu Jihad, a Pakistani during his interrogation by police. Zulfikar was himself a well trained magician and he displayed his ‘magic skills’ before a select group of mediapersons in police custody last night. Zulfikar said he was trained in atleast 15 magic tricks by a special squad of the ISI. Training in the magic was given to him after he had completed his training in handling of arms and explosives in two camps of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). In addition to him, four more similarly trained terrorists were operating in twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri, according to LeT terrorist. But, police sources said, the number of such terrorists could be more as many terrorists don’t know each other as per the latest modus operandi introduced by the ISI to avoid arrest of the terrorists in case any of their colleague is captured by the security agencies. Citing sources, police said, Zulfikar, who was arrested from Ustaad Mohalla last month, was not aware of another LeT terrorist Mohd Akram, who was nabbed by SOG Jammu from Sunjwan few days back. Zulfikar displayed a number of tricks before the newsmen. They included doubling the currency taken from a civilian, keeping an egg flying in air for more than one minute, reading language of the letter in possession of another person, growing mustard seeds on a hand and making blank a written paper. According to Zulfikar, he was told by the ISI officers to become a ‘madari’ (street magician) to evade his arrest and avoid being doubted by security agencies in case such a need arises. Meanwhile, following the disclosure, police officers in Jammu have issued a directive to all police stations, police posts and nakas to keep a strict vigil on the street magicians as they could be the terrorists and ISI agents. Zulfikar said he was also fond of watching Indian movies. ''I have watched more than 200 movies in my life and, of them, only three were Pakistani movies. Rest all were Hindi pictures'', he said, adding he had specially purchased a VCR here to watch Indian films. Earlier, Zulfikar was fan of leading Indian heroins Madhuri Dixit and Juhi Chawla. Presently, he said, Kaho Na Payaar Hai fame Amisha Patel was his best heroin. Zulfikar said he had been advised by a LeT commander in Pakistan (before being pushed into Jammu and Kashmir) that he shouldn’t visit the theatres for watching movies for fear of being arrested. As such, he had purchased a VCR to watch his favourite films. A top terrorist of LeT, Zulfikar was dealing in financial transactions of the outfit. He had disbursed Rs 20 lakh of hawala money few days before his arrest. He himself was leading a luxurious life having a Maruti Versa car worth Rs 7.20 lakh fitted with music system worth Rs 80,000. He had purchased an Evacuee Property house from a local civilian in Ustaad Mohalla and had paid Rs 2.70 lakh to the house owner. Zulfikar had also disclosed in police custody that the hawala money was being sent to the terrorists by don Dawood Ibrahim and his associates through some leading businessmen of New Delhi.