Wed, 29 Aug 2012 16:36:34 GMT

Supreme Court upholds Kasab's death sentence



New Delhi, Aug 29 (IANS) The Supreme 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 that the death penalty is the only sentence that can given in the circumstances of the case," the apex court bench of Justices Aftab Alam and C.K. Prasad said.

Kasab, one of the 10 Pakistanis who sneaked into Mumbai on the night of Nov 26, 2008 for a terror siege of the city that ended on Nov 29 afternoon, had moved the apex court challenging the death sentence by a trial court, which was later upheld by the Bombay High Court.

The court rejected Kasab's contention that the Mumbai terror attack was a war against the government of India and not against the Indian state or its people.

The court said the government of India was only the elected organ of the state and the repository of the sovereign powers.

Having said this, the court added: "Primary and foremost offence by the accused (Kasab) was waging war against India."

The high court had upheld Kasab's death penalty Feb 21, 2011.

Kasab was sent to the gallows by a Mumbai trial court May 6, 2010. Besides other charges, he was convicted for waging war against the nation.

An apex court had reserved the verdict on the conclusion of arguments that spread over nearly three months, starting Jan 31.

Kasab and his nine associates who had sailed from Karachi reached Mumbai after they hijacked private Indian ship M.B. Kuber and killed its navigator Amar Chand Solanki.

©Indo-Asian News Service

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