(Photo : Mumbaikars including Muslims celebrating the verdict on Ajmal Kasab)
This much I can say : I have never felt any hatred or anger towards any of the killers, not even for a moment. And personally, I don't want the surviving terrorist to be given a death sentence. I would like to see him incarcerated for life and made to work for humanity.
If I were to sit with the killer, I would ask him to tell me about his family, about his childhood. I believe he came from a very poor background and the leaders of the terrorist group used him.
I was in Florida when I heard the news that my husband and my daughter were also killed in the Mumbai terror attacks. I collapsed on the floor. After weeping for a long long time, I went into myself and began to pray..
~ Kia Scherr, who lost both her husband Alan, aged 58, and her only daughter Naomi, aged 13, in the November 2008 terrorist attacks at Mumbai.
Capital Punishment is a lawful infliction of death as a punishment. It is an extreme form of retributive justice sentenced by the governing jurisprudence. As modern civilisational values grew over the last two centuries, this form of punishment began to be increasingly viewed as a barbaric form of cruelty and the efficacy of it as a deterrent measure became questionable.
Countries like Venezuela and Portugal were the first nations to abolish the death penalty altogether as early as the 1850s. Today, it is virtually abolished in all of Western Europe and most of Latin America. Britain effectively abolished capital punishment in 1965. It is still not abolished in India, many states in the USA, China, Japan and many Asian, especially West Asian and African nations.
Ajmal Kasab is just a pawn, who was picked up from an impoverished family in Pakistan. He was trained and brain-washed to perpetrate such a heinous violence on the innocent denizens of Mumbai. By hanging Ajmal Kasab in India, what do we achieve? Next time, when the Taliban slits the throat of an innocent Muslim in Afghanistan and hangs him in public, how are we going to react? How do we understand the sentiments of Kia Scherr, who is another victim of Mumbai terror attacks? Though Ajmal Kasab is also a victim of terror, won't complete life imprisonment do much greater justice? Can't he be made to repent and wail till he dies? Won't those echoes reverberate on and on? And keep haunting the public memory?
It is time to ask profound questions : What are the factors which made an innocent Ajmal Kasab turn into a dreaded terrorist? Who are all responsible? How can real justice be done to all those complex issues that would crop up, if we start asking the real questions? Will terrorism of all kinds stop until we address the root-causes of it?
Since we do not want to get disturbed deeply and want to continue with our petty ways of living, we feel happy that the fool is finally hung and the files would shortly be closed.
And we call it as justice!