Mumbai massacre gunman to enter pleas

The only surviving terror suspect in the Mumbai attacks will get his first chance to enter his pleas to a series of charges in court tomorrow.

The only surviving terror suspect in the Mumbai attacks will get his first chance to enter his pleas to a series of charges in court tomorrow.

Prosecutors had proposed 312 charges against him, including waging war against the nation, but Judge M L Tahiliyani said that he would formally announce which charges Mohammed Ajmal Kasab will face in the hearing.

Kasab’s lawyer S G Abbas Kazmi would not comment on the charges and said: “I will reveal my strategy only when the time comes.”

Mr Tahiliyani said Kasab will be given the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty to the charges on the same day.

Two other accused, Sabahuddin Ahmed and Faheem Ansari, will also face charges tomorrow. The two allegedly helped supply reconnaissance ahead of the terror strikes in November last year.

Ansari has pleaded that the charges of waging war against the nation in this case was not applicable. He is accused of preparing maps of the city, which were used by the 10 terrorists during their attack.

His lawyer Shahid Azmi said: “The accused, as per Kasab’s confession, wanted to liberate (the state of Jammu and) Kashmir, not overawe the government. In any case, it seems a little improbable that by attacking Mumbai they could liberate Kashmir.”

Yesterday, Public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam also sought warrants against 35 wanted Pakistanis accused of links with the attacks last year including Lashkar-e-Taiba commanders Zarar Shah, Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi and Colonel Sadatullah of Pakistan’s Special Communication Organisation.

Earlier, Kasab’s plea to be tried in a juvenile court was quashed after tests proved his age was above 20 years.

The terror strikes in Mumbai on November 26 last year killed 183 people and wounded over 700 others.

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