As news of Ajmal Kasab’s secret execution spread across the country on Wednesday morning, Mumbaiites greeted it with diverse reactions – some celebrated, others found their faith in the judiciary renewed, while a section of residents felt the action came too late and that his hanging was just the tip of the iceberg with regard to the attacks.
While political parties celebrated at various parts of the city, more than a hundred dabbawalas came together and burnt Kasab’s pictures at the Grant Road station. Ragunath Mezge, chairman, Dabbawala Association said, “We were annoyed by the amount of money spent on his security. India is not a rich country that we spend crores of rupees to keep a terrorist alive. We are glad that he is finally executed, hence we burnt pictures.”
However, there were no celebrations at the CST station, Leopold Café, Taj Mahal hotel — all of which were targetted by terrorists during the attack. Outside CST, local MNS activists hanged an effigy of Kasab near the Dhanyawad gate and distributed sweets. Since the government hanged Kasab secretly, his effigy with garland of shoes was hanged as a protest,” said MNS activist Arvind Gawade. “We hanged him at the place from which he entered the CST.”
Others were happy with the secrecy and efficiency of the execution. “Though it is delayed, I am glad it has finally happened. I am proud the government did it very efficiently without giving the slightest hint,” said Rajkumar Sharma, coordinator, Action for Good Governance and Networking in India (AGNI).
Amit Talwalekar, 32, a bank employee and Borivli resident said, “This is the real tribute to the martyrs who gave their lives on the fateful day. It is a democratic victory and my trust in law has strengthened.”
But for engineering student Monisha Dhirmalani, the delay in taking action was worrisome. “After four years, the government realised he should be hanged. The effect of this action would have been more valuable if it had come immediately after the attack,” she said.
19-year-old Ashwin Patel also felt the execution did not make much difference. “For me, justice delayed is justice denied. It would have been a notable verdict if he was hanged earlier. Money spent on him could have been utilised for welfare purpose,” he said.