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26/11 case begins, Kasab smiles on screen

Last Updated: Monday, October 18, 2010 - 17:26

Mumbai: Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving
Pakistani terrorist involved in the 26/11 attacks, smiled,
yawned and scratched his head showing no signs of remorse as
the State opened arguments in the Bombay High Court on Monday on
confirmation of his death sentence.

Government Counsel Ujjwal Nikam, while giving details
about the barbaric acts of Kasab and nine others who came from
Pakistan to strike terror in Mumbai, said "the 26/11 attack
was an act of state-sponsored terrorism and was executed by
Lashkar-e-Taiba with the aid of security apparatus of that

The arguments began in court 49 before Justice Ranjana
Desai and Justice R V More through video conference to enable
Kasab hear the proceedings from the Central Jail where he is
imprisoned in the high security bomb and bullet proof cell.

23-year-old Kasab, who appeared on a big screen sharp at
11 AM, seemed to be uninterested in the proceedings as most of
the time he was seen smiling and yawning. At times, he
scratched his head, played with the button of his prison
uniform and stretched his arms.

During the first half of the hearing, Kasab sought
permission to go to the washroom. He gestured at jail staff
who informed the court which allowed him.

This is for the first time that arguments on
confirmation of death sentence are being heard through video
conference in the Bombay High Court, legal sources told PTI.

The entire High Court building was converted into a
fortress with deployment of armed policemen at all the four
entrances. Lawyers, media persons and Court staff were issued
special passes to enter Court 49 to hear the 26/11 case.

Although Kasab was not brought to the court, security was
tight in view of the sensitive nature of the case.

On May 6, the trial court had awarded death sentence
to Kasab. In accordance with law, death penalty was referred
to the High Court for confirmation.

Nikam said a heinous conspiracy was hatched in Pakistan
by LeT to destabilise India, wage war against the country and
cause financial losses by organising terror attacks in Mumbai
in November, 2008, in which 166 persons from India, UK, USA,
Israel and other countries were killed.

He said the ten terrorists were trained in Pakistan
and left Karachi for Mumbai by boat Al-husseini. Midway, they
hijacked M V Kuber and killed captain Amarsinh Solanki. They
landed at Badhwar Park in South Mumbai and went to different
places in separate batches to execute the terror attacks.

Kasab and Abu Ismael took a taxi and planted a bomb
before getting down at CST where they fired indiscriminately
at people, killing several. The taxi bomb exploded at Vile
Parle in which the driver and a lawyer were killed.

The duo then entered nearby Cama Hospital and killed a
police officer and a constable while injuring few others.
Outside the hospital, they shot dead top police officers,
Hemant Karkare, Ashok Kamate and Vijay Salaskar.


First Published: Monday, October 18, 2010 - 17:26

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