What exactly did David Coleman Headley tell Rahul Bhatt, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt’s actor son, just before the Mumbai terror attack of November 26, 2008, that left 166 people dead? Headley told a Chicago court on Thursday that he told Bhatt not to go to South Mumbai on November 26, the day of the Mumbai terror strikes.
Bhatt played no part in Headley’s plans, and had nothing to do with the attacks.
But if he indeed had been warned by Headley, what exactly was he told? Headley was not in India then — he was in Pakistan. How did he contact him — through phone or email?
Headley remain in email touch with Bhatt even after the attacks. He is believed to have written saying he was sorry to hear about the tragedy. But he was never more pleased, in fact, as he told the court.
While Rahul was unavailable for comment, his father said: “This is flawed reportage. There was no specific mention of 26/11. Rahul was having a chat with Headley, who he saw as an American businessman, about a blast at the Mariott in Islamabad and Headley had said that what’s happening in Islamabad, Pakistan, may play out in Mumbai, India, as well.” Mahesh Bhatt reiterated that the Indian authorities had been informed about all that had transpired between Rahul and Headley.
Headley told the court that he begun liking Bhatt and that he had planned to make a movie with the young man in lead. But the US believes, according to a recently unsealed document, Bollywood could have been a target too. Bhatt and Headley met at a Mumbai gym in 2007.
Headley told the Chicago court he had planned to recruit Bhatt as an ISI agent, and had even planned to take him to the tribal areas of Pakistan, but not to kidnap or kill him.