Rana`s acquittal not to affect Kasab case: Nikam

A US court`s acquittal of Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Hussain Rana on charges of abetting the Mumbai terror attacks would not affect the legal proceedings against terrorist Ajmal Kasab, Ujjwal Nikam said.

Last Updated: Jun 10, 2011, 19:35 PM IST

Mumbai: A US court`s acquittal of
Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Hussain Rana on charges of
abetting the Mumbai terror attacks would not affect the legal
proceedings against terrorist Ajmal Kasab, special public
prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam on Friday said.

"However, it pains me to hear how Rana was exonerated
from criminal conspiracy of 26/11 terror attack particularly
when co-accused David Headley`s evidence about complicity of
both of them in the conspiracy has been accepted by the
court," Nikam said here, reacting to the verdict.

Rana was acquitted by a Chicago court on the charges of
abetting the Mumbai attacks but was convicted for providing
material support to LeT and helping a terror plot in Denmark.

Nikam said the legal proceedings against 26/11 convict
Kasab, who has been held guilty of participating in the terror
attacks by the Bombay High Court, will not be affected by
Rana`s verdict.

"The law of conspiracy in USA, UK, India and Pakistan is
very clear to the effect that once a conspiracy is hatched and
participants have been involved in that, then it is not
necessary that conspirators should do overt acts as conspiracy
itself is a punishable offence," Nikam, who was prosecutor
in the Mumbai court which conducted the 26/11 trial, said.

When the Chicago Court accepted Headley`s evidence that
he and Rana had hatched a criminal conspiracy with LeT, then
the acquittal of Rana from the 26/11 terror attacks is itself
contradictory, he said.

"Once the Chicago court accepted the theory of conspiracy
about the involvement of Rana and Headley in plotting various
terrorist acts then the court ought to have held Rana guilty
of 26/11 terror attacks," Nikam said.

PTI