Girl injured in 26/11 identifies terrorist KasabJune 10th, 2009 - 8:11 pm ICT by IANS
Mumbai, June 10 (IANS) A minor girl, injured and disabled during the 26/11 terror attacks, pointed an accusing finger at Mohammed Ajmal Amir alias Kasab and identified the sole Pakistani terrorist captured alive after the carnage in the Special Court here Wednesday.
Devika Rotawan, 10, walking on crutches, was helped to the witness box by her teary-eyed father Natwarlal as Kasab and the other two accused - Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) activists Fahim Ansari and Sabhauiddin Shaikh Mohammed - looked on without any expression.
When Special Judge M.L. Tahilyani asked the girl if she could recognise the gunman who opened fire at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) from among the three accused standing in the dock, she pointed a finger at Kasab.
Natwarlal, who is from Rajasthan, was with his family in a waiting room near the busy CST railway station’s platform No.13 and they were to catch a train to Pune when two terrorists - Kasab and his associate Abu Ismail - struck. When the gunmen opened indiscriminate fire inside the CST, Devika sustained a bullet injury in the right leg.
Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam said he had sought the court’s permission to examine her since her evidence would be crucial in the case.
“She was aware of the legal formalities and also took the oath and deposed in a very proper and dignified manner,” Nikam told IANS, shortly after the day’s hearing ended this evening.
Speaking in Hindi, Devika also recounted in detail the incidents that night - how her father picked her up and attempted to escape but she was hit by a bullet.
At least 58 people were killed and 90 injured in the firing inside CST by Kasab and Ismail that night before they walked out of the station building to perpetrate terror elsewhere in the metro.
Kasab’s government-appointed lawyer S.G. Abbas Kazmi decided against cross-examining Devika in the matter.
Later, taking the witness box, an emotional Natwarlal hurled abuses at Kasab but the court ordered that the remarks should not be recorded.
“It is that fellow who is sitting there… He should be hanged. He has injured and maimed my daughter,” he shouted in the court.
He also identified Kasab and recounted the events that he witnessed on 26/11 during the terror attack.
More than 170 people were killed during Nov 26-29 in the attack mounted by Kasab and his nine associates from Pakistan.