Expressing displeasure over media reports about the huge sum spent on the security of Mohammad Ajmal Amir ‘Kasab,’ the lone surviving gunman of the Mumbai terror strikes, Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan said on Saturday that it was the government’s obligation to oversee his security till the trial was completed.
Mr. Chavan was addressing a meeting of journalists organised here by South Asian Free Media Association.
“Today Kasab’s trial is in progress. I feel sad when reports say Kasab is the biggest celebrity. We have to see that he survives till the end of the trial, and he is convicted through the due process of law. It is not for the government to hang him; it is for the court to decide. How much money spent on him is not important; what’s important is that the legal process is concluded,” he said.
Calling for global action against terrorism, Mr. Chavan said he hoped to see a “serious effort from Pakistan” towards this end, and in the 26/11 case.
“We all believe we should have a peaceful life and country. There is an enemy within every society, who should be removed to facilitate progress. Let us understand each other’s issues. There are issues in Pakistan as well, as in other neighbouring countries. We have to think of how to tackle issues globally,” he said.
The fear of 26/11 still loomed large over Mumbai, he said, wishing that the city were not remembered by that fateful date but by its economic rise and global character. “With the economic boom, the enemies are also growing.”
Terrorism apart, the media should focus on problems such as global warming, water shortage and social issues, he said. There was pressure on the media with the “growing requirement of news.” “Let’s communicate news and not make news,” he said.