05/03/2010, 00.00
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Special court convicts terrorist involved in Mumbai attacks

Verdict comes 17 months after multiple attacks left 166 dead and almost 900 wounded. Two Indians who prepared maps for terrorists were acquitted, causing outrage among Indians. The lone surviving terrorist could get the death penalty. Sentence is expected in two days.
Mumbai (AsiaNews) – A special session court in Mumbai convicted Ajmal Kasab, a Pakistani terrorist, for waging war against India and manslaughter. He was accused of taking part in a military-style operation that left 166 dead and thousands scarred for life. The multiple attacks targeted the Taj Mahal and Oberoi hotels, the Chhatrapati Shivaji (railway) Terminus, Nariman (Chabad) House, the Leopold Café and the Cama Hospital.

Kasab is the lone survivor of a ten-man commando. The others were Abu Ismael, Abu Akasha, Abu Umar, Abdul Rehman Bada, Abu Umer, Abdul Rehman Chhota, Fahad Ullah, Javed Abu Ali and Abu Shoeb. After killing innocent people, all of them held out against Indian security forces, the longest, for 60 hours.

For security reasons, the Indian court met inside the Arthur Road jail. Judge M L Tahilyani pronounced the verdict.

The two Indian co-accused, Fahim Ansari and Sabahuddin Ahmed, who were charged for conspiracy in the terror attacks—preparing maps of the targeted locations and handing these to Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) operatives—were acquitted for lack of convincing evidence.

The trial was one of the fastest involving terrorism. It started on 15 April 2009 and ended on 31 March this year.

In 17 months, more than 600 witnesses were heard. Special Judge ML Tahilyani accepted the prosecution’s contention that Kasab was one among the 10 terrorists who came to Mumbai via sea from Karachi on 26 November 2008.

The sentence will be issued two days from now. Kasab could get the death penalty.

Among ordinary Indians, early comments express outrage over the acquittal of the two Indians involved in the case. (NC)

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See also
Mumbai terrorist Kasav gets the death penalty
India remembers the victims of the Mumbai attacks of 26 November 2008
Mumbai terrorists all Pakistani, Indian Muslims condemn them
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