'Most 26/11 victims were from weaker section'

New Delhi: Prosecution in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack involving Mohd Ajmal Amir Kasab on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that he deserved death penalty as a majority of the victims belonged to weaker sections of the society.

Former Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam and special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam submitted it was a well-designed operation in which the terrorists were asked by their Pakistani handlers to strike at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminal (CST) which is one of the most important crowded railway stations in Mumbai.

They narrated the sequence of events in the terror attack at CST by Kasab and another Lashker-e-Taiba militant which resulted in the killing of 52 persons and injury to 109.

"A number of people belonging to weaker sections had been killed and injured in the attack on the historic railway station. The barbaric nature of the attack could be seen from the number of women and children killed and injured," Subramaniam told a bench of justices Aftab Alam and CK Prasad while seeking endorsement to the death sentence awarded to 24-year-old Kasab.

He also read out the moving testimony of Devika Rotawan who was 10 years old when she was hit in the leg by a bullet during the attack.

Further, he submitted that the DNA of the 10 terrorists, who had participated in the attacks, matched with some of the blankets, jackets, caps etc. found on the Indian boat, Kuber, which had been hijacked by the terrorists to reach Buddhawar Park in Mumbai.

Kasab is the sole convict of the carnage in which 166 people were killed. He has pleaded with the Supreme Court to commute his death sentence to life imprisonment.

The apex court had stayed Kasab's death sentence on October 10 last year.

In the special leave petition (SLP) challenging the Bombay High Court judgement that confirmed his death sentence, Kasab had claimed he was brainwashed like a "robot" into committing the crime in the name of "God" and that he does not deserve death penalty due to his young age.

Kasab, who is lodged in Arthur Road Prison in Mumbai, had filed the SLP through the jail authorities.

Kasab, along with nine other Pakistani terrorists, had landed in south Mumbai on November 26, 2008, night after travelling from Karachi by sea and had gone on a shooting spree at various city landmarks.

While Kasab was captured alive, the other terrorists in his group were killed by security forces during counter-terror operations. He was sentenced to death by a special anti-terror court in Mumbai on May 6, 2010.

The Bombay High Court had on February 21 last year upheld the death sentence for the "brutal and diabolical" attacks aimed at "destabilising" the government.

Kasab's death penalty was upheld on charges of criminal conspiracy, waging war against the nation and various other provisions of the Indian Penal Code and anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

The high court had upheld Kasab's conviction on 19 counts under the IPC, the Arms Act, the Explosives Act, the Explosive Substances Act, the Foreigners Act, the Passport Act and the Railway Act.