India hangs Ajmal Kasab, the one surviving gunman of 2008 Mumbai attacks

Mohamed Ajmal Kasab

NBC News staff and wire reports

India hanged Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, the only militant to have survived the 2008 attacks on the financial capital Mumbai, officials said Wednesday.In August, India’s Supreme Court upheld Kasab’s death sentence over the attack on a string of targets in Mumbai that killed 166 people. Kasab, 25, was a Pakistani national. He was executed at 7:30 a.m. local time.

The execution at Yerawada Prison in Pune, near Mumbai, came just hours after President Pranab Mukherjee rejected a mercy plea by Kasab, who had said he belonged to the militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba.

It was the first time a capital sentence had been carried out in India since 2004. Many foreigners, some of India’s wealthy business elite, and poor train commuters were killed by 10 Pakistani gunmen in a three-day rampage through some of Mumbai’s best-known landmarks, including two luxury hotels and a Jewish center.

Kasab was filmed walking through Mumbai’s main train station carrying an AK-47 assault rifle and a knapsack on his back. Nearly 60 people were gunned down in the crowded station. In footage obtained by NDTV in India, Kasab told an investigator that his father had encouraged him to join with the rebels.

The investigator: “Son, who asked you to come here?”

Kasab: “My father did. He told me, son, we are very poor.”

The investigator interrupted, surprised: “Your father?”

Kasab continued: “He said, ‘You will live and learn just like these people do. It is not difficult. We will also get money. We will be rid of our poverty. Your brothers and sisters can get married. Son, you will live comfortably like these people do.”

His father told the Times of India, however, “I don’t sell my sons.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

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  1. Ravi-Swiss

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