Prosecution winds up 26/11 case

Kasabs statement tomorrow, says he is fit to give his version

Prosecution winds up 26/11 case


It was a huge task for the prosecution, which was carried out expeditiously by special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam in record seven months into the trial. The prosecution put up testimonials in oral as well as in written form by 610 witnesses, many of whom had actually seen Kasab and his nine Pakistani accomplices shooting innocent people of Mumbai.

Two Indian operatives of the Pakistani terror outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) Faheem Ansari and Sabauddin Ahmed are facing the trial along with Kasab.
Of the 610 witnesses, the prosecution examined 267 in person, which included senior police officials, forensic experts, eyewitnesses and FBI officials. The evidences of the remaining formal witnesses were adduced in the form of affidavits before the court.
These witnesses were not examined in person as they were formal in nature and included those who had carried bodies of the victims to hospitals, relatives of victims who claimed the bodies, people who suffered damage to their assets and medical officers who treated the victims.
The prosecution’s evidence included Kasab’s confessional statement before a magistrate, in which the terrorist revealed that he and his associates were trained in an LeT camp in Pakistan.

Designated Judge M L Tahilyani fixed December 18 as the date to record the statement of Ajmal Kasab on the prosecution evidence and witnesses, as required under Section 313 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). Kasab has already pleaded guilty to some of the charges framed against him.
Kasab’s court appointed defence lawyer K P Pawar, however, argued that the trial should proceed only after Kasab was declared medically fit. At this, the judge asked Kasab whether he was ill, but the Pakistani national replied in the negative and said he was fit to give his statement.

“The trial began on May 8 and in about seven months the prosecution on Wednesday closed the case,” Nikam told mediapersons outside the court in the high security Arthur Road Central Prison.

The prosecution’s aim was not only to prove the case against Kasab, but also expose the prime conspirators from the LeT, he said.
“Kasab is just an instrument in the hands of the terror outfit. He and the nine other slain terrorists were a small part of the LeT, which wanted to inflict serious damage to India by attacking its commercial capital,” Nikam said.

Pak links
The prosecution has tabled concrete evidence of Pakistan’s links to the terror attacks in the form of telephone intercepts between the terrorists and their Pakistani handlers, he said.
The special court had in the beginning of the trial issued non-bailable arrest warrants against 27 absconding accused, including LeT founder Hafeez Sayeed and outfit’s chief of operations Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi. The latter is facing a trial in Pakistan along with five others, while Hafeez Sayeed is still a free man there. The warrants have been forwarded to the Interpol for execution.

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