VOICE OF AMERICA
By Raymond Thibodeaux
Link: VOA News - Mumbai Muslims Call for Action Against Pakistan in Wake of Attacks
Investigators probing the Mumbai terror attacks say they are uncovering clues that operatives within the city aided the gunmen who carried out the three-day assault that left 174 people dead and more than 230 injured. As more details of the terror attack surface suggesting Pakistan as the launching pad for the attacks, many in the city's Muslim community are wary of a communal backlash as anger rises against Pakistan.
The Makhdum Ali Mahimi mosque is in the heart of one of Mumbai's largest Muslim neighborhoods.
Twenty-one-year-old Yusuf Ahmed has just finished his Friday prayers at the mosque. Like many of Mumbai's Muslims, he is keeping a close eye on the investigation into last week's attack, especially as more and more evidence surfaces suggesting that an Islamist militant group within Pakistan may have masterminded it.
Like many Muslims, he is calling for stern action by India against those behind the three-day siege. "Police are investigating the case and we should believe them. They [the attackers] should be punished. The most important thing about our religion is that we should not kill any innocent people."
Islamic leaders in Mumbai have held peace marches and set limits on Eid celebrations next week in part to distance themselves from Islamist extremists blamed for the attacks. They have called on India to stop peace talks with Pakistan until it hands over the leaders of Lashkar-e-Taiba, the Islamist militant group that some reports have linked to the Mumbai assault.
Muslims make up about 15 percent of Mumbai's more than 14 million people.
At the Mumbai police headquarter, Police Chief Rakesh Maria played down reports in the Indian media that more attackers were at large. Asked if he felt sure that only 10 assailants carried out the siege, he had this to say. "There is the interrogation of the arrested accused, number one. Number two, statements of witnesses in the fishing village from where they were supposed to have moored their dinghy. And three, there are certain documents which we have recovered and on the basis of those documents were are saying that," he said.
Maria said investigators say they continue to examine the possibility that the gunmen may have had help from operatives within the city.
Photo: Indian Muslim children in city of Hyderabad shout anti-Pakistan slogans during protest against Mumbai attacks