To ensure that maximum Muslims were killed, the accused in the Samjhauta Express train blasts initially planned to bomb a Muharram procession and a Muslim educational institute. Also on their hit list was Delhi’s Jama Masjid, which they had surveyed at length.
What made them jettison that plan was the heavy security presence in these areas, including metal detectors.
Interrogation of one of the accused, Kamal Chauhan, has also revealed that as part of their training, they were shown Anurag Kashyap’s Black Friday (based on the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai) in March 2006. At the time, the controversial film had not been cleared for official release, though its pirated copies were available.
Chauhan told interrogators that they saw the film in a hut in village Bagli near Indore. Following lifting of a ban by the Supreme Court, Black Friday was released on February 9, 2007.
The Indian Express has a copy of Chauhan’s statement, running into eight pages.
Chauhan also disclosed names of his RSS accomplices who were imparted “one-day exclusive bomb training” in Bagli. He said RSS activists Rajender Chaudhary, resident of Depalpur, and Dhan Singh, resident of Hatod in MP, had influenced him to work for the “dignity and safety of Hindus”. He said he met Amit Chauhan, an expert in bomb making, at the training.
Kamal Chauhan admitted to being influenced by Sunil Joshi (who died in mysterious circumstances), and said he had met him at an RSS camp in 2001 at Depalpur. “Sunil Joshi and Lokesh Sharma told me I should also be a part of those people who shall retaliate against criminal acts (especially bomb blasts in Hindu religious places) committed by fanatic Muslims. During the period, we all used to discuss attacks on Hindu temples/places by ****** Muslims and the support of Pakistan behind this kind of heinous crimes,” reads Chauhan’s statement.
Almost a year after the Bagli training, in January 2007, Chauhan and Chaudhary came to Delhi to conduct a recce of places such as Jama Masjid and Old Delhi station allegedly on directions of Lokesh Sharma.
“...we found that it was not possible to plant a bomb inside the Jama Masjid as all the gates were guarded by the police and metal detectors were in use. Thereafter we visited Old Delhi railway station and observed the platform from where Samjhauta Express left for Pakistan. We found that security arrangements were not proper/adequate and found that a bomb can be easily planted on the Samjhauta Express train. After reaching Indore via Bhopal, we informed Lokesh accordingly,” says Chauhan’s statement.
Samjhauta blasts: Accused surveyed Muslim areas, watched Black Friday - Indian Express