The family members of the victims of the 26/11 attack will be relieved that Ajmal Kasab has been hanged finally. The lone terrorist who was captured was given a fair trial and his execution was the logical punishment. It was a difficult case for the police and other agencies, but they have done a good job of it, even if it took four years. We must not ignore the fact that the world was watching our every step. Pakistan authorities refused to cooperate with the Indian authorities on the case. Kasab was a pawn, and India will be looking to get the masterminds of this horrendous attack. Kasab’s execution will send a strong message of such elements who continue to operate from Pakistan.
—Faizan Javed Jamaluddin, by email
As I viewed the news about the hanging of Ajmal Kasab, I was saddened to hear a news anchor on a leading English channel ask a Pakistan journalist whether this could increase the pressure on the authorities in Pakistan to similarly punish Sarabjit Singh, the Indian prisoner convicted and sentenced to death by a court in Pakistan for alleged involvement in terror attacks. This is a case of grave provocation and an example of a loss of perspective. There have been such instances before and one wonders about the cause of such irresponsible statements. It seems that in race to boost TRP ratings, TV journalists are overstepping the limits of journalistic propriety, which is a grave disservice to our nation.
—V Rajalakshmi, Mumbai
The fact that the operation to execute Ajmal Kasab was shrouded in secrecy, with even the hangman kept in the dark about the identity of the convict till the last minute, will not be appreciated, but definitely criticised. Human Rights Watch has urged India to do away with the death penalty. But I think they are trivialising the consequences of such crimes, when they are pushing for life-term punishment. The death penalty is a credible deterrent. Without it criminals would believe that they could engage in such crimes and get away with it. Everything cannot be justified in the name of humanitarianism.
—KS Jayatheertha, Bangalore
The decision to hang Ajmal Kasab, ahead of the queue of convicts on death row, was the need of the hour. Huge delays in deciding on the mercy petitions, rejection of the mercy petitions and the subsequent execution leads to unnecessary provocation, with even representative bodies demanding pardon on regional or religious grounds. The Supreme Court has expressed its concern over such indecision. There should be a time limit of three months to decide on mercy petitions and once the petition is rejected, the punishment should be implemented within a week. Indecision could also lead to a repeat of incidents like the Kandahar hijack to secure the release of convicts before they are hanged.
—Madhu Agrawal, Delhi
Apropos of “Why am I so scared today?” I salute the girls for their bravery. Everybody knows that the police’s actions to take them to the police station at night and arrest them on harsh charges, was completely wrong ethically and legally. I would like to see the CM suspend the police officers for their illegal actions. The complainant, Bhushan Sankhe, should be arrested under the very same sections (that were used against the girls) for inciting goons to vandalise the orthopaedic hospital. There should be no compromise on our constitutional guarantees, whatever be the circumstances. No political group can be above the constitution. I hope that the Shiv Sena leaders will make its workers understand the importance of being law-abiding citizens first.
—Priyanka Ghosh, by email
Apropos of “As if very fazed, RR Patil orders high-level probe”, the decision by the chief minister and the home minister to order an inquiry into the Palghar case is welcome. But why does the inquiry have to be completed before any action is taken? The policemen involved should have been suspended on the basis of prima facie evidence, pending the inquiry. The undue haste with which they acted on the complaint and arrested the young girls after sunset, slapped charges without justification, detained them at the police station till midnight, are all illegal actions that contravene human rights. The state should not wait for the girls to seek redressal, but must take the initiative and demonstrate a firm stand on the rule of law. A case should also be filed against the complainant Bhushan Sankhe .
—Suren Abreu, Mumbai
Apropos of “Social media not fazed by the backlash” and Manjul’s cartoon, the unjustified arrest of the young girls has sparked off mass resentment, particularly among the young generation. The senseless enforcement of laws has angered people and statements like “we are waiting for the outcome of the high-level probe” will only receive contempt. The home minister must realise that these two young girls may have to carry the tag of a criminal record through their life, unless something is done now.
—Haridasan Mathilakath, Navi Mumbai
The Indian team’s victory over England in the first test match in Ahmedabad may seem to have been a thumping win. But the reality is that it was a struggle for our bowlers, particularly in the second innings. But for the poor application by the England batsmen, as in the first innings, the match could have well been a closer finish. Therefore, I think we are dreaming to expect a clean sweep of the series, unless of course the top batsmen score tons of runs to back the spinners.
—N Mahadevan, Mumbai
Apropos of “MSD hits out at Motera pitch”, Dhoni has said that he would like to see a pitch on which the ball turns from day one. By this he probably means, first, that he wants England to have a chance in the game and, second, when India plays at home we must take advantage of the conditions. If he didn’t and ended up losing, he would be taken to task by the media for not being able to exploit the home advantage. I must add that I am not a great supporter of Dhoni, but he should not be criticised unnecessarily.
—Sauud Sayed, by email