Kasab says charge of `waging war` not made out against him

Kasab today argued before the Bombay HC that the charge of `waging war against the nation` was not made out against him because he had not targetted government officers or property unlike Parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru.

Last Updated: Nov 30, 2010, 22:52 PM IST

Mumbai: Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab
today argued before the Bombay High Court that the charge of
`waging war against the nation` was not made out against him
because he had not targetted government officers or property
unlike Parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru.

This contention was made when Justice Ranjana Desai,
who, along with R V More, is hearing confirmation of death
penalty awarded to Kasab for his role in 26/11 attacks, said
that Kasab fired at people at Chhatrapati Shivaji Railway
Terminus which is a government property and also killed
policemen.

Kasab`s lawyer Amin Solkar argued that the
prosecution`s case is that the gunman had fired at people and
there is no evidence to suggest that he wanted to attack
government officers or government property.

Citing the case in which Afzal Guru was found guilty,
Solkar argued that the accused had the intention to attack
MPs, ministers and government officers. Hence the Supreme
Court justified the charge of "waging war against nation" in
that case.

In Kasab`s case, Solkar argued, prosecution did not
say that he wanted to attack government property or staff.

Section 10 of Indian Evidence Act says that anything
said or done before or after the conspiracy should not be
considered. In Kasab`s case, he said, his role in conspiracy
ended at the time of his arrest on November 27, 2008.

Therefore, the killing of people in Nariman House and
hotels Taj Mahal and Oberoi-Trident after Kasab`s arrest
cannot be used against him as evidence. This part of the
conspiracy, in which he was implicated, should be discarded,
Solkar argued.

According to the lawyer, the trial court had rejected
the evidence of recovery of boat Kuber by which terrorists are
believed to have arrived from Karachi through the sea. If the
recovery of Kuber was rejected, the recovery of Kasab`s jacket
from the boat should also be discarded, Solkar argued.

The trial judge had discarded the evidence of recovery
of Kuber because the boat was ferried from the high sea to the
dock after Kasab disclosed that body of its navigator Amarsing
Solanki was lying in the vessel. Mere knowledge about the body
does not prove the crime and police did not conduct an
independent probe to find out what was in the boat, he argued.

Everyone had the knowledge about the boat but yet the
police failed to search the vessel. They relied on Kasab`s
knowledge about body lying in Kuber. Police also had knowledge
about Kuber but did not search the vessel, Solkar said.

Prosecution had sent 14 blankets and 15 jackets found
in Kuber for DNA test. This indicated that 14 people were in
the boat. Hence, the 15th jacket (believed to be that of
Kasab) was planted in Kuber, Solkar alleged.

To the prosecution`s case that 10 terrorists had
arrived in Kuber, Solkar asked, "So where are the four
others?" He also referred to an eyewitness who had told police
that she had seen 10 people reaching the shores of Mumbai and
four others leaving going away in a dingy.

-PTI