HC order on Kasab's plea on Feb 7

The high court, comprising Justice Ranjana Desai and Justice R V More, reserved its order on Kasab’s appeal against the special court’s judgement on Monday, after hearing arguments for the last three months.

Kasab was given awarding capital punishment by the special court for his involvement in the massacre of 166 people on November 26, 2008. The high court will also decide on the confirmation of Kasab’s sentence. As per the legal procedure, any death penalty pronounced by the sessions courts has to be confirmed by the high court.

The bench reserved the orders on the plea by Maharashtra government challenging the acquittal of two accused, suspected Pakistani terror outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) operatives Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin Ahmed, by the special court for want of evidence.

The two were charged with providing maps of targets like Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Taj Mahal Palace hotel, Chhabad House at Colaba, Oberoi Towers at Nariman Point to the LeT. The arguments on the confirmation of the sentence began on October 18 before the bench, which allowed Kasab’s presence during the hearing, through video conference link due to high security risks.

The high court premises were sealed on that day, and the court room 49 was out of bounds for commoners. Only litigants and their lawyers as well as members of press were allowed entry inside high court premises during the hearings.

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