It’s been a while since I did anything for CG. This write-up deviates from the classic CG benevolence of dishing out everything in a nicely sorted out manner. There are about 20-25 points in this piece that you could be tested out, in CLAT. Have fun finding them!Also, if I have missed out anything, please do post it in the comments. It never hurts to help. (Paaras Pandey, NALSAR 2016)
Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab was a member of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the terrorist organization involved in the 2008 Parliament attack (. Having gone through the basic combat training and terror methodology of LeT (Daura Aam), he also underwent the advanced training camp in the Khyber-Pakhtunwaala region called Daura Khaas, and finally the Fedayeen training. The targets of the Fedayeen squad that Kasab was part of were the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, the Oberoi Trident, Nariman House, and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. Kasab was the lone attacker captured alive in the attacks, which killed 166 people.
The attackers left Karachi in a boat, travelled for 48 hours, hijacked an Indian trawler MV Kuber and subsequently used inflatable boats to land at Colaba. The group split, and Kasab and his accomplice Abu Ismail Khan first ataacked the Chhatrapati SHivaji terminus, and then went on to kill Maharashtra ATS Chief Hemant Karkare, officer Ashok Kamte and ACP Ashok Kamte. Abu Ismail was later killed and Kasab captured when the car they were travelling in was ambushed by the police. The duo had constantly been in touch with their (suspected ISI and Lashkar men) handlers in Karachi through Swiss made Garmin GPS systems. It was later verified that Kasab hailed from Faridkot village in Pakistan (Faridkot is also a district in Punjab, India).
Kasab’s trial took place in a high security special Court set up in Arthur Road Jail (Mumbai Central Prison), the largest and oldest prison in Mumbai. ML Tahaliyani was appointed the 26/11 special Judge, and Ujjwal Nikam the Special Public Prosecutor. Initially, Advocate Anjali Waghmare was appointed as his lawyer, but was replaced on grounds of ‘professional misconduct’ having earlier accepted a prime witness’s case brief. She was replaced by Advocate SG Abbas Kazmi, who was assisted by Mr. KP Pawar. After the framing of charges, Kasab was charged on 86 counts (the prosecution had initially asked for him to be charged with 312), all of which he denied. Advocate Kazmi too was later dismissed for ‘not cooperating with the Court in the interest of justice’.
Kasab was sentenced to death by the Special Court on five counts of murder (S.302 IPC), conspiracy to commit murder (S.120B IPC), waging war against the country, abetting murder and committing terrorist activities under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. The death sentence was upheld by the Bombay High Court, and subsequently by a Supreme Court bench comprising of justices Aftab Alam and CK Prahlad. His mercy plea was rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee in December 2012.
The power to grant presidential pardons is provided in Article 72 (1) of the Constitution of India. Every death sentence upon conviction by the Trial Court, the Hight Court must certify the sentence. Bachan Singh v. State of Punjab, a Supreme Court Judgement said that the death penalty could not be a compulsory punishment and can only be given by the courts in the ‘rarest of the rare’ cases.
Around 19th November, Mohammad Ajmal Aamir Kasab was secretly shifted to Pune’s Yerwada jail and later hanged to death, Operation X, as it was called, was carried out under the aegis of the Home Ministry. This was the first death sentence carried out in India since 2004, when Dhananjoy Chatterjee, who had been convicted for rape and murder, was executed in Alipore Central Jail, Calcutta.
(Apart from this; know everything about the key conspirators – Saeed, for instance. Names of the police officers and NSG commandos and other information pertaining to the event)