London/New York/Washington/ Toronto, Nov.21 (ANI): International media appeared to give a muted, mixed and matter of fact response to the Indian Government’s move on Wednesday morning to hang Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist involved in the November 26 to 29 terror attack on Mumbai that claimed 166 lives and injured over 300 others.
The Telegraph UK went with the headline ” Last surviving Mumbai gunman Mohammed Kasab executed in India”.
The daily quoted local Indian media as saying that Kasab was executed at 7.30 a.m. Indian time at Yerawada jail in Pune in the western Indian state of Maharashtra after India’s President Pranab Mukherjee rejected his mercy plea earlier this month.
It said Pakistan-born Kasab was one of 10 gunmen who laid siege to the city in attacks that lasted nearly three days and killed 166 people and gave a brief detail of his trial as per Indian law.
The Independent UK went with the headline – “In great secrecy, India hangs last surviving Mumbai attacker Mohammed Ajmal Kasab”.
The daily said: “India executed the lone surviving gunman from the 2008 terror attack on Mumbai today, after President Pranab Mukherjee rejected his plea for mercy. Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, a Pakistani citizen, was one of 10 gunmen who rampaged through the streets of India’s financial capital for three days in November 2008, killing 166 people. Kasab was hanged in secrecy at 7.30am local time at a jail in Pune, a city near Mumbai.”
It quoted Maharashtra Home Minister R.R.Patil, as saying: “This is a tribute to all innocent people and police officers who lost their lives in this heinous attack on our nation.”
The Independent said that the Indian authorities faced public pressure to execute Kasab quickly and the government fast-tracked the appeal and execution process, which often can take years, or in some cases, decades.
The Washington Post went with the headline “India hangs lone suspect in 2008 attacks”.
In its report from New Delhi, the WP briefly mentioned that Kasab had been hanged and that he was one of 10 gunmen who sailed into India’s financial hub of Mumbai and launched a series of attacks on two five-star hotels, the city’s main train station, a restaurant and a Jewish prayer center.
It quoted India’s home minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde, as telling reporters in New Delhi: ” It was decided on the 7th of November, it was important to keep it a secret,” Shinde said and added that there was no demand from Pakistan for the Kasab’s body so far. “We have informed Pakistan. If they demand it, we will hand over the body.”
It quoted Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, as saying: “There is a rule of law that is followed in India, whether he is an Indian citizen or not. This shows that whatever time and money it takes, justice will be done.” Kasab was asked if he had any last wish or wanted to write his will. He said in writing that he did not feel the need to do so.”
It quoted Geeta Salaskar, the wife of one of the police officers killed during the 2008 terror mayhem, as saying: “I wondered many times if I will be able to see Kasab hanged in my own lifetime, I am very happy with the justice given by the Indian government. But this is not complete justice because the masterminds in Pakistan are yet to be punished.”
Ujwal Nikam, the main prosecutor of the case was quoted by the paper, as saying: “I am very happy about the hanging because I was in a position to bring justice to 166 departed souls who died in the terror attack four years ago. We established through the legal process how terror was exported to India from Pakistan. This will make Indians very happy because ultimately Kasab got a harsh punishment that is similar to the manner in which he mercilessly killed innocent people that day.”
The New York Times had no report on Kasab till the filing of this report
The Times , London, went with the headline: “Mumbai terror attack gunman executed”.
In its report, the daily filed amatter of fact report in which it said: “The lone surviving gunman of the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks has been secretly hanged, India’s government confirmed this morning.
The death sentence for Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, a 25-year-old Pakistani national who claimed to be a member of the Lashkar-e-Taiba militant group, was upheld in August by India’s Supreme Court. He had been convicted more than a year ago of being part of a team that launched a gun and grenade rampage through some of the city’s main landmarks on November 26, 2008 that killed 166 people.”
Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald went with the headline: “Mumbai attacks gunman executed”. It reported the story in a matter of fact detai, and quoted Maharashtra Home Minister R.R.Patil, as saying that Kasab’s execution was a “fitting tribute to the victims of Mumbai attacks.”
It said that India’s Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde had informed his counterparts in Pakistan of Kasab’s execution.
It quoted Devika Rotwan, now 13, who was shot in the leg when Kasab and his colleague Ismail Khan opened fire at the Chattrapati Shivaji Terminus on the first night of the attacks, as saying: ” I am very happy that Kasab has been hanged. I had always felt and said that it should have happened earlier, but it is good.”
Rotwan, who gave evidence at Kasab’s trial, further said: “The government has done something good at last.”
The Telegraph, Australia, went with the headline: “Mumbai attacks gunman Kasab executed”.
It too filed a matter of fact report on the event.
The China Daily did not make a mention of the story.
Canada’s The Globe and Mail newspaper went with the headline: ” India hangs lone surviving gunman from 2008 Mumbai attack”.
It also filed a matter of fact report on the event. (ANI)