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Video conference link in jail for Kasab underway

Last Updated: Sunday, September 26, 2010 - 13:12

Mumbai: Preparations are underway in the high security Central Prison here for a video conference link to enable Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab hear proceedings in Bombay High Court pertaining to confirmation of death sentence imposed on him for his role in the 26/11 attack.

The High Court would conduct a daily hearing of the matter from October 18 and has directed the state to provide a video conference facility in the court and in the jail so that Kasab can attend proceedings without being physically present.

"We are making arrangements for a video conference facility near the cell of Kasab so that the security provided to him is not exposed to any risk," official sources said.

Already there exists a facility of video conference for prisoners in the jail but for Kasab special arrangements are being made separately so that the security measures are not compromised, they added.

In the High Court, video conference arrangement would be made by MTNL, according to Government counsel Ujjwal Nikam.

Kasab is lodged in a special high security cell which is bullet and bomb proof and is segregated from other cells in the prison. The cell has been specially constructed along with a courtroom in adjacent barrack to try anti-terror cases.

Meanwhile, the Court would hear arguments on September
28, a plea made by Kasab for an interview with his lawyers
Amin Solkar and Farhana Shah "within the sight (of police) but
not hearing distance".

After hearing the state and Kasab`s lawyers, the High Court may pass order on this plea.

On September 20, the court had asked Kasab`s lawyer Farhana Shah to meet her client in jail and find out whether he wanted to attend the proceedings.

However, state`s counsel Ujjwal Nikam objected to Kasab`s presence in the court on the ground that he had a threat perception and police would have to take a big risk of
bringing him to the Court from Central Jail every day.

Kasab`s lawyer informed the Court that the convicted terrorist was interested in attending the proceedings in person but the bench did not allow his plea in view of the
threat to his life and instead suggested video conference to allow him to hear the matter.

Kasab`s lawyers said they are expected to file an appeal against his conviction before October 18 so that it can also be taken up for hearing.

The court has already admitted state`s appeal against the trial court`s order acquitting Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin Ahmed on the ground that evidence against them was not strong.

On May 6, Kasab was sentenced to death for killing 166 persons and injuring many others in the world`s worst terror attack on November 26, 2008. He was charged with opening fire in various public places. Nine other terrorists were killed by security forces while Kasab was captured alive.


First Published: Sunday, September 26, 2010 - 13:12

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