While confirming the death sentence of Ajmal Kasab, the lone Pakistani gunman captured alive in the Mumbai terror attacks case, the Supreme Court on Wednesday said ‘absolute certainty’ may not necessarily be a myth or fake in all cases.
Justice C.K. Prasad, who sat on the Bench with Justice Aftab Alam, said: “Hardly [does] one come across a case, where the court does not resort to ‘certain probability’ as a working substitute for proof beyond all reasonable doubt. However, in the case in hand, from the evidence, oral and documentary, reference of which has copiously been made in the judgment by Justice Aftab Alam, make me believe that ‘absolute certainty’ may not necessarily be a myth or fake in all cases and can be a reality.”
Justice Prasad said: “The present case is an exception. Here, I am more than certain that the planning and conspiracy to commit the crime were hatched in Pakistan, the perpetrators… were Pakistani, trained at different centres in that country, and the devastations which took place at various places in Mumbai were executed by the appellant in furtherance thereof.”
Justice Alam said: “We find that the primary and first offence that the appellant and his co-conspirators committed was the offence of waging war against the government of India. It does not matter that the target assigned to the appellant and Abu Ismail was CST Station (according to amicus curiae Raju Ramachandran, counsel for Kasab, no more than a public building), where they killed a large number of people or that they killed many others on Badruddin Tayabji Marg and in Cama Hospital. What matters is that the attack was aimed at India and Indians. It was by foreign nationals. People were killed for no other reason than they were Indians; in the case of foreigners, they were killed because their killing on Indian soil would embarrass India. The conspiracy, in furtherance of which the attack was made, was, inter alia, to hit at India; to hit at its financial centre; to try to give rise to communal tensions and create internal strife and insurgency; to demand that India should withdraw from Kashmir; and to dictate its relations with other countries. It was in furtherance of those objectives that the attack was made, causing the loss of a large number of people and injury to an even greater number of people.”
Nothing could have been more “in like manner and by like means as a foreign enemy would embarrass India.”