Witness nails two accused in 26/11 terror case

Nuruddin Shaikh told the court that he had been to Nepal where he met both the accused who said they had made maps at the instance of Lakhvi (Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, chief of Lashkar-e-Taiba operations).

In cross-examination by defence lawyer Shahid Azmi, the witness denied he was deposing falsely at the instance of Mumbai police crime branch. Asked why did not attend the court on Friday, Shaikh said he had gone to a friend's house where he fell ill and slept. The witness said he did not inform his family because they have no telephone or mobile phone.

Shaikh also denied a suggestion that he had criminal cases pending against him at some police stations. In another development, a forensic expert said DNA samples obtained from eight blankets recovered from `Kuber' boat had matched with the DNA of slain terrorists and lone surviving Pakistani gunman Ajmal Kasab.

This indicated that the terrorists had travelled by the boat to reach the shore of Mumbai, Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam said. The forensic expert also said that DNA samples obtained from terror site, Oberoi hotel, had matched with DNA of slain terrorists. This showed the presence of attackers at the five-star hotel in south Mumbai, said Nikam.

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