Washington: There is a “strong possibility” of Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Hussain Rana’s extradition to India before the completion of his 14-year jail term in the US in 2021 for plotting the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, an informed source said. Rana, 58, a resident of Chicago, was arrested in 2009 on the charges of plotting the 26/11 terror attack. A total of 166 persons were killed in the attack carried out by 10 LeT terrorists in Mumbai.
In 2013, Rana was sentenced to 14 years of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release by US District Judge Harry Leinenweber. US officials say he is set to be released in December 2021. The Indian government, with “full cooperation” from the Trump administration, is currently working on completing the necessary paperwork to ensure the extradition before his current jail term ends in December 2021.
India would not seek extradition of Rana on the charges for which he is already serving his jail sentence, as officials pointed out that the “double jeopardy” clause in the US justice system prohibits punishing a person twice for the same crime. India is seeking extradition of Rana on the ground that he was actively involved in planning an attack on the New Delhi-based National Defence College and Chabad Houses in several cities. There is also a forgery case registered against him in India.
Following a recent visit to the US by India’s NIA team, officials from both sides have agreed to cut down on the bureaucratic procedures so that all the necessary paperwork is ready before his current jail term ends. As per the US law, Rana, a Canadian national, would most probably be deported to Canada if India and the US are unable to complete the cumbersome extradition process before his release.