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For Kasab, realisation sinking in

india Updated: May 13, 2009 23:43 IST
Presley Thomas
Presley Thomas
Hindustan Times
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For 21-year-old Ajmal Amir Kasab, the feeling of being caught for a terrorist attack in a foreign land and tried in a court is sinking in.

The instructions given to the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba (LeT) terror suspect — the final instructions after months of indoctrination — were simple: attack India, attack the infidels.

But the terror attack of November 26 also meant the end of his indoctrination.

Lodged in a high-security capsule of Arthur Road prison called the Anda cell, Kasab has little hope his Pakistani mentors would keep their promise of taking care of his parents in Okara village near Faridkot.

State-of-the-art facilities including a pool were reportedly at his disposal as he underwent training in the jungles of Manshera in Muzzafarabad. The likes of Hafiz Mohammed Saeed and Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, chieftains of the LeT in Pakistan, promised his family would be taken care of.

Kasab was surprised to see the nine bodies of his accomplices who died in the attack. “I was told that our faces would shine even when we were dead,” he reportedly told police officers. “But it is not so.”

Jail officials say there is a change in his behaviour as he switches between the indoctrinated world and his ‘real’ self. Officers who monitor him round the clock say that as witnesses continue to single him out, he could get violent.

“Kasab is not an intelligent fellow who could manipulate. It is just his indoctrination that guides him,” said a senior officer on condition of anonymity. “And with little to do within the 32-sq ft cell, his patience is wearing down...”

Some change in Kasab’s behaviour is evident. In the initial days of the trial, he would sit in the courtroom indifferent to the happenings and would try to chew a string of hair.

Now, he’s attentive — at least for brief spells.