The only man sentenced to gallows by the Supreme Court in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, Yakub Memon, received the news in silence on Thursday, and continued to be so on Friday.
As opposed to Memon, his co-accused and cell mates, Abdul Gani Ismail Turk and Asgar Yusuf Mukadam, were effusive in their gratitude to God after knowing that their death penalty has been commuted to life imprisonment. “We are grateful to Allah,” they said, according to Nagpur central jail officials.
The jail authorities have since shifted Gani and Asgar from the death row cell to another cell while security has been tightened on Yakub.
Yakub recently secured a post-graduate degree in English from the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU).
A professional chartered accountant and brother of Ibrahim Mushtaq (Tiger) Memon, Yakub used to handle the finances of Tiger’s illegal operations.
He was shifted to Nagpur central jail in August 2007 from Pune’s Yerwada jail on administrative grounds.
Yakub is the most educated member of the Memon family and has been in jail since he returned to India and surrendered in 1994. Nagpur jail superintendent Vinod Shekdar said Yakub, who has now enrolled for MA (political science), is a “soft-spoken person”.