David Coleman Headley told the US Court in Chicago that he planned to assassinate Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray when the latter visited the US along with his son Uddav.
Headley said he hated the Shiv Sena and considered it a “terrorist organization.”
Shiv Sena is one of the most visible of India’s right wing groups — drawing its support from Hindu Marathis, especially in and around the Mumbai region. The Sena was involved in the post-Babri riots in Mumbai as well.
Headley said that both the ISI and the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) were involved in the plot to kill Thackeray.
He has already said that he got in touch with a Sena volunteer — who has since confirmed the event — to try and get inside the organization.
Rajaram Rege has confirmed that he had a couple of meetings and email exchanges with Headley, but had refused permission to the foreigner to enter the Shiv Sena’s headquarters in Dadar in Mumbai.
Thackeray has already dismissed Headley’s threat, pointing out that he has lived with such threats for many years.
Shiv Sena is involved in many anti-outsider protests, including those against Hindu Indians who are from outside the Maharashtra state.
Headley also told the Court that he and others were planning to enter the offices of the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, cut off the heads of those who worked there and throw them out of the window in a “media event.” The plot was foiled after Headley was arrested in 2009 after one of his three wives squealed on him.