The extradition of one of the key aides of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim to Pakistan has brought the bilateral ties between India and Thailand under a cloud, according to a media report.
Dawood Ibrahim is wanted in India to face the law of the land for carrying out serial blasts in Mumbai in 1993 in which scores of people were killed and injured.
The Thai based ‘The Nation Thailand’ in its report dated October 11 has said: “Thailand finds itself caught in the crossfire after a bitter battle in Bangkok between India and Pakistan for the extradition of a convicted criminal.”
On October 9, Thailand sent D-company operative Munna Jhingada aka Mohammed Saleem back to Pakistan after a Thai court of appeal overturned a lower court ruling ordering his extradition to India.
The newspaper quoted an India government source as saying that “New Delhi was miffed by the outcome and feared the turn of events could cast a shadow over bilateral ties.”
India had attached huge importance to the case, and it had raised the issue with the highest authorities in Thailand for the last two years, the source was quoted as saying.
“We offered to fly both his parents by a special jet so that Thai authorities could do DNA testing in Thailand. Unfortunately, that offer was turned down,” the source added.
During the three-year legal battle, India had claimed the convict was its citizen, Sayeed Muzakkir Mudassar Hussain, known by his assumed name Munna Jhingada.
The source in the Indian government said while New Delhi respected Thailand’s justice system, it was shocked by the outcome.
Jhingada had served 16 years in prison in Thailand where he was convicted around two decades ago to 35 years in prison for an attempt on underworld don Chhota Rajan’s life. Jhingada’s sentence was reduced to 16 years through separate pardons and he was released from prison in 2016 but a request for his extradition was already filed by India in 2012.
Dawood Ibrahim is accused of the 1993 Mumbai bombings in which 257 people were killed and hundreds were injured. India has asked Pakistan several times to hand over Dawood Ibrahim.
Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Raveesh Kumar had said that the presence of Dawood in Pakistan is not a secret.
“The location of Dawood Ibrahim is not a secret. Time and again, for the last several years, we have presented to Pakistan a list of people who are there in their country. We have asked repeatedly that he should be handed over,” Kumar had said while addressing the media some time ago.