Just two days back, when defence lawyers Amin Solkar and Farhana Shah went to see him, 24 year old Ajmal Amir Kasab was reportedly tense; anticipating an adverse verdict from the Bombay High Court.
On Monday, however, the Pakistani national was seen in completely different mood; he flashed his usual nonchalant smile. Kasab took a seat before the digital camera that connected a video link between Arthur Road Prison and court room no 49 of the Bombay High Court exactly at 10:54 AM.
Clad in a white kurta-pyjama, sporting a small beard, Kasab sat in the chair placed before the camera greeting everybody in the jam packed courtroom with a smile. But, he continued to flash the smile even after Justice Ranjana Desai, presiding over the division bench declared its verdict.
"An appeal filed by accused no. 1 (Kasab) is dismissed," pronounced Justice Desai adding, "We have also dismissed the appeal filed by the State against the acquittal of accused no. 2 (Fahim Ansari) and accused no. 3 (Sabauddin Ahmed)".
The judge then pronounced the important part of the bench’s ruling and then moved towards the video conferencing screen to explain the verdict to Kasab in Hindi.
“Aapko di hui Saza-e-Maut hamne barkarar rakhi hai (We have upheld the death sentence awarded to you) ….. Apko is faislay ke khilaf Supreme Court mein appeal dayar karne ka adhikar hai (You have the right to appeal against this decision before Supreme Court.),” Justice Desai explained to him.
However, Kasab maintained a stoic silence.