“Ab faasi kab lagegi?” (When will I be hanged) was 26/11 terrorist
Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab’s first reaction when a constable on duty at the Arthur Road jail told him about the Supreme Court (SC) upholding his death sentence. Sources said he asked just one question and retreated back into his cell on Wednesday morning.
Prison officials, however, denied that Kasab was informed about the SC verdict on Wednesday. “We have not received any official order from the court and so, we have not told him. After getting a copy of the order, we will inform him. As per law, the order copy will be shown to him and he will acknowledge having received it,” said A Rane, superintendent, Arthur Road jail.
Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist of the 26/11 attack, has been languishing in a high-security cell at Arthur Road jail since he was captured on November 26, 2008. The only time he was brought out of the cell was during the trial when he was taken to court. After the trial ended, he has been in solitary confinement inside the small cell monitored through CCTVs round-the-clock. Two guards are posted outside the cell 24x7 to ensure he does not harm himself.
Sources said Kasab has changed from a restless, aggressive 21 year old to a subdued and quiet person after the trial ended in the special court. He does not talk to anyone and keeps to himself.
The only thing he tells the jail staff is that he wants his ordeal to get over. Sources said after the Bombay high court sentenced him to death, he was prepared for the SC verdict. Wednesday’s ruling did not come as a surprise to him.
“Kasab’s health is being monitored daily by prison doctors. Doctors from JJ hospital also visit him once a week to ensure he does not fall ill. His health is fine and he is mentally alert as well, though not as much as he was after his arrest,” sources said.
Officials denied reports that Kasab was being served non-vegetarian food in jail. “He is only served vegetarian food as per the jail manual and diet fixed by the authorities. Kasab was served poha for breakfast on Wednesday. His lunch comprised a bowl of lentils, two vegetables, five rotis and rice,” a jail official said.