Supreme Court upholds Kasab's death sentence
Court Wednesday upheld the death sentence of Ajmal Kasab, the only
surviving Pakistani terrorist behind the 26/11 Mumbai strike that
claimed 166 lives. "We are constrained to hold
Referring to the "deception" and "falsehood" that the terrorists
involved in Mumbai attacks were Indian Muslims from Hyderabad, the
Supreme Court Wednesday said that had Kasab not been caught alive,
terrorists might have passed as Indians and that would have led to
devastating short-term and long-term consequences.
"The deception, the falsehood that the terrorists were Indian
Muslims coming from Hyderabad and were connected with some
fictitious organisations called Mujaheddin and Hyderabad Deccan,
is one of the most ominous and distressing parts of the
conspiracy", said the apex court bench of Justice Aftab Alam and
Justice C.K. Prasad, which upheld Ajmal Kasab's death sentence.
"If the appellant (Kasab) had not been caught alive and the
investigating agencies had not been able to unravel the conspiracy
fully and in all its devious ways, the terrorists might have
passed as Indian Muslims and that would have led to devastating
short-term and equally debilitating long-term consequences."
"It would have caused a cleavage of distrust and suspicion between
communities and disturbed the communal peace and harmony of the
country. It is not impossible that conflagrations would have
erupted in different parts of the country which the governments
would have found difficult to contain," said Justice Alam, who
authored the judgment.
The court said that in this regard, "the selection of Chhatrapati
Shivaji Terminus (CST) as one of the targets for carnage assumes
great importance". Trains, the judgment said, leave for many parts
of the country from the CST.
Thus, as news of the carnage spread across the country through the
media, travelers would start arriving in different parts of the
country, some having lost their near and dear ones at the CST,
some with a wounded companion and others shell-shocked by the
experience of the terrorist attack, the judgment observed.
"Their first-hand, eye-witness accounts of the carnage added to
reports in the print media and visuals in the electronic media
could be highly inflammable and could easily evoke communal
violence that would be difficult to contain," the judgment said.
The court said that the "deception was ominous because it aimed at
destabilising Indian society and its governments. But it was
equally distressing for being so deeply untruthful."
"Indian Muslims", the judgment said "may have a long list of
grievances against the establishment. Some of the grievances may
be fanciful, some may be of their own making and some may be
"Nevertheless, no Indian Muslim would even think of venting his
grievance like an animal, killing, maiming and wounding innocent
people; his own countrymen."
"This is because he is not only loyal to his faith and community
but equally loves his country and fellow countrymen," the judgment