Death sentence for Ajmal Kasab? Supreme Court to decide tomorrow

New Delhi: The Supreme Court is scheduled to deliver its verdict on Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab’s plea against his death sentence tomorrow. Kasab, the only terrorist caught alive during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, had pleaded the Supreme Court to commute his death sentence to life imprisonment on February 14.

A trial court had sentenced the 24-year-old to death on May 6, 2010, an order which was later upheld by the Bombay High Court on October 10 last year.

Senior advocate Raju Ramachandran, who had been appointed amicus curiae by the Supreme Court to defend Kasab, had told the bench that he was not a part of the larger conspiracy for waging war against the nation. However, on behalf of the Maharashtra government, Gopal Subramanium had argued that Kasab should be hanged as he was a part of a conspiracy to wage war against India.

Even as Kasab’s trial continues in the Supreme Court, the cost of keeping him alive is a huge burden on the state exchequer. While the Government has spent over Rs. 5 crores on his high security cell at Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail, his security entrusted to the Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) has cost the state over Rs. 19 crores.

166 people were killed in the 2008 Mumbai attacks when 10 Pakistani terrorists sailed from Karachi to Mumbai 11 to show India a side of terror it had never dreamt possible. While Kasab was captured, all the other terrorists who had sailed with him and attacked Mumbai were killed during counter-terror operations.

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