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India ‘disappointed’ with Rana verdict

New Delhi: India said on Friday it was ”disappointed” with the decision of a US court to clear Pakistan-born Canadian businessman Tahawwur Rana in the 2008 Mumbai attack though it was “not a setback” as India was still investigating the case.

“We are disappointed,” U.K. Bansal, secretary (Internal Security) in the home ministry, told reporters here.

He said India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA), which is probing the Mumbai strike, has sought some documents from the US court to pursue the case against Rana and his close friend David Coleman Headley.

Bansal said there was evidence against Rana, who provided material support to Headley and advised him on how to scout terror targets in India.

On Thursday, Rana was cleared by a federal court in Chicago in the Nov 26-29, 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack that claimed 166 lives, but was convicted of helping the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) which India holds responsible for the strike.

Rana was also convicted for his role in a thwarted plot targeting a Danish newspaper that printed controversial cartoons of Prophet Muhammad, according to Chicago Sun Times. Rana now faces up to 30 years in prison.

Earlier Bansal had said the verdict was not a setback. “We do not see it as a setback for India as the case is still under investigation. In our handling of terrorism in India, we don’t rely on other country’s evidence and investigation,” he said.

“We will have to study the judgment. The judicial system in both the countries is different and it is too early to say anything,” Bansal said.

“The matter is still under investigation. It has to be seen what our courts say when the matter is presented to them after investigations are over,” added Bansal.

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