Hopeful of getting 26/11 voice samples soon: Shinde
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The Home Ministry on Saturday insisted that the decision to let the Pakistan cricket team play a series in India must not be seen as a dilution of New Delhi's stand that Islamabad must move faster and in a more effective manner to bring the Pakistan-based handlers of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks to justice.
Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, while talking to reporters at his monthly press conference, also indicated that there could be some movement on India's demand seeking the voice samples of these handlers, which could then be matched with the ones who are on tape giving directions during the 2008 attacks.
He said that he had requested Pakistan's Interior Minister Rahman Malik to provide the voice samples to India as quickly as possible. Pakistan has been citing legal hurdles to deny the samples.
"We are hopeful that we will get the voice samples soon. They have told us that they are consulting their legal officers. They may come to us with something," Shinde said.
Malik is expected to visit India later this month. Shinde did not say whether a breakthrough was expected during that visit with regard to the voice samples.
Home Secretary R K Singh said that India's demand for the voice samples does not get compromised in any way by the invitation to Pakistan's cricket team to play a series in December. "India's stand on this issue is very clear. We have been consistently putting pressure on Pakistan to give us the voice samples. The Pakistan government has informed us that it was expediting its own legal process and requested a court in Rawalpindi to fast-track the trial of the seven accused persons (believed to be the masterminds of the Mumbai attacks)," he said.
"We have told Pakistan time and again that the ring leaders must be put on trial. There is no climb down in our position," he said.