ByÂ Ashima Gujral:
The recent declaration by Taliban to avenge Kasab’s death has brought forth as a cause for worry.
Mohd. Ajmal Kasab, the lone survivor of the fighter squad that barged into the commercial capital of the country, Mumbai, on 26 November 2008 and killed 166 people, was hanged on 21 November 2012. After four years of trial and conviction under superlative security, he was hanged till death in Pune’s Yerwada Jail. The news came as a huge relief after Kasab’s clemency appeal was turned down by the President on November 5. There were celebrations all over the country for the enemy of the state was finally given his long due punishment.
But the celebration was short-lived as Taliban’s spokesperson Ehsanullah Ehsan demanded that Kasab’s body be returned to his family else they would target Indians anywhere. Taliban, a close associate of Al-Qaeda, is one of the biggest security threats in Pakistan, claiming responsibility for many suicide and gun attacks across the country.
As per the Indian government, attempts had been made to contact Kasab’s family before his execution but no such demand was put forward either by the family or the government. Resultantly, he was buried in the prison grounds of Yerwada jail. Kasab admitted to being a member of Lashkar-e-Taiba but apparently denied any links with Pakistani Taliban.
Listening to the news, the Indian government immediately beefed up security in the Islamabad embassy citing security reasons. But the question missing here is that, will India have to pay a price all over again? Firstly the attacks that brought Mumbai to a standstill, claimed lives and left the country in shock and now this declaration? The state and central governments have ordered more security alerts at border areas but is that enough?
The claim to target Indians everywhere does not restrict to the geographical boundaries of India alone but this demand and warning, is it really a fearful situation or is it just another baseless attempt creating terror in the minds of the people?
Kasab’s hanging was the first capital sentence since 2004. He was charged with the offences of murder and waging war against the state and the lone survivor, deserved punishment on behalf of all those who caused this terror attack. But will this justice cost us something?
History has been an evidence that the path to justice and righteousness has always been a tough one. And so was the trial of Kasab since it involved a lot of sensitivities. And how this declaration is only another trouble indicating that the chapter is not yet over. The war against terrorism is a long battle and this supposed warning is only going to make the Indian government stronger and more prepared for action.