Mon, 21 Feb 2011 14:06:17 GMT | By R Shankar, India Syndicate

Rs 100 cr – cost of keeping Kasab alive

By the time the Kasab verdict is executed, India would have spent a tidy sum on the terrorist

Rs 100 cr – cost of keeping Kasab alive

The Bombay High Court has upheld the death sentence on Ajmal Kasab who was involved in the terror attack on Mumbai on November 26, 2008. This verdict was on expected lines. Before you say 'at last', tarry. This is not the final call. The verdict will have to be confirmed by the Supreme Court and then it will land on the President's table where mercy petitions of nearly 30 convicts are gathering dust - some of them are under a thick blanket of political dust (example Afzal Guru).

By the time Kasab stands before the noose, he would, in all probability, become a middle-aged man. This is because the 30 guys before him would have to meet their fate as pronounced by various courts.

Considering the fact that Afzal Guru, who was involved in attacking Parliament ten years ago, is still on death row, Kasab's turn may come somewhere around 2018 or beyond. By then we would have spent close to Rs 100 crore in keeping him alive and secure.

The Maharashtra government spends close to Rs 9 lakh a day to keep the 21-year-old terrorist from the Pakistani town of Faridkot 'safe' till he goes to the gallows. The government had spent Rs 31 crore on Kasab by November 2010. The figure is close to Rs 40 crore now.

"The state's debt has crossed the Rs 1.85 lakh crore mark. But of course, where security of the state and the country is concerned, we don't discuss the financial situation,'' a senior government official was quoted in an agency report.

The Rs 31 crore figure is strictly unofficial since the government is wary of letting out any information on Kasab. Following the directives of the Centre, besides procuring weapons for emergency use, vehicles and equipment, two special cells were created inside Arthur Road jail and JJ hospital for Kasab.

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