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HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times
Mumbai/Delhi, September 18, 2012
Three weeks after the Supreme Court upheld his death sentence, Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the sole surviving Pakistani gunman in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, filed a mercy plea before the President.

On Saturday, Kasab handed over the handwritten note in Hindi to AC Rane, superintendent of Arthur Road jail, where he is currently lodged.

“Kasab has filed the mercy plea. The process for sending the application to the President has begun,” said inspector general (prisons) Vinod Lokhande.

“After contemplating for a few days, Kasab decided to seek Presidential pardon,” said Rane.

On May 6, 2010, a special court had convicted Kasab and sentenced him to death. Subsequently, Bombay high court and later, on August 29, the SC upheld the order. An official of Rashtrapati Bhavan said they hadn’t received the petition so far.

President Pranab Mukherjee is yet to take a call on the 11 petitions that he inherited from his predecessor Pratibha Patil.

Once the Rashtrapati Bhavan receives Kasab’s plea, it will be forwarded to the home ministry for its recommendation, which, in turn, will send it to Maharashtra government for its opinion. The home ministry will take a view after receiving the state’s comments.