The special sessions court hearing 26/11 attacks case on Wednesday drew attention to the fact that the police had not sent a piece of writing, found on a bomb timer, for handwriting analysis.
During the process of recording of gunman Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab’s final statement, judge M.L. Tahaliyani showed him a piece of paper, which had been affixed on the timer of a bomb recovered from the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) in the aftermath of the attacks. The words “Mujahid Fisabilillah” (one who fights for Allah) were written in the chit. Kasab stated in his February 2009 confession statement that the 10 attackers had signed on the timers, given to them by Abu Kahfa, during their training.
“The chit should have been sent to a handwriting expert. This aspect should have been examined,” Mr. Tahaliyani told special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam. Mr. Nikam conceded that the police had not included the fragment of writing in their investigation.
Kasab said his entire confession statement was a fictitious tale woven by the police. Mai ye kasam khake kehta hun ke ye bayan mera nahi hai (I swear this statement is not mine), he averred.
Kasab denied that instructions were given by Lashkar handler Zaki-Ur-Rehaman Lakhvi. He said he had never stated that Lakhvi had told Mujahideen about the targets, that he had asked them to brush fire at the CST and leave out Muslims and that he had directed them to place RDX boxes outside target locations to prevent the police from reaching them. He also retracted the story of their journey from Karachi to Mumbai. About a trainer (ustaad) Abu Bashir, he said, Bashir was his Urdu teacher at school.
The court noted that Kasab had a grasp of the proceedings, as he “interpreted” the difference between denying what Lakhvi said and denying what he had said about Lakhvi in his confession. “So you understand English,” Mr. Tahaliyani remarked.
Kasab’s understanding of words and language is a matter of great interest to the court. When the lone surviving gunman referred to a piece of pink foam as “bed sheet,” the court was quick to observe, “Yesterday he said he did not know what a blanket meant, and today he says bed sheet.”
According to Kasab’s confession, the handlers gave him a magazine called “Taibaat”. The accused said he didn’t know what that word meant. The court also asked him to explain the words, Tool Chaurai (latitude and longitude) in vain. He had stated in his confession that Lashkar leader Zarar Shah had a state-of-the-art computer lab. Shah had also shown Kasab a CD of the Mumbai targets in the “media wing control room.” The location of Badhwar Park was shown to him on Google Earth. Kasab denied everything. As for the maps, he claimed to have never named or seen the other two accused Fahim Ansari and Sabahuddin Ahmed.