Ajmal Kasab, the name is known by almost every Indian. Why? It is because he was the one by whom hundreds of innocent people lost their lives, many children became orphan and a number of women became the widow. He was responsible for 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks in the Maharashtra state of India and was the only attacker captured alive by police.
He was only 25 years old when got executed by hanging on the orders of the Indian government in the year 2012. The last words Lashkar-e-Taiba operative Ajmal Amir Kasab said to senior police inspector Ramesh Mahale were, “Aap jeet gaye, main har gaya [you won, I lost].” The admission came in November 2012, a day before Kasab would be hanged to death for being guilty of 80 offences.
Ramesh Mahale, now retired, was the chief investigator of the 26/11 attacks and headed Mumbai’s crime branch Unit 1 in 2008. Kasab was in the crime branch’s custody for about 81 days before being shifted to a specially-made, bulletproof, high-security cell in Arthur Road Jail. Mahale, who retired in 2013, said that,
“Till the time he was handed a death warrant by the court, Kasab believed he would get a leeway from Indian laws. We made Kasab feel comfortable and easy and waited for him to break on his own. I was having a conversation with Kasab when he said though he could be hanged for his crime, it wouldn’t happen because the Indian justice system abhorred the death penalty. He hasn’t been hanged even eight years after the Indian courts pronounced his death sentence.”
On November 11, 2012, a special court issued Kasab’s death warrant. Kasab was shifted to Yerwada Jail in Pune where he would be hanged to death on November 21. At midnight on November 19, Mahale had words with him in the cell, he told him that,
“Yaad hai? Char saal bhi nahin hua. Ab aur saat din baki hai [Remember what you said? It hasn’t even been four years. There’s still a week left].”
Kasab replied with,
“Aap jit gaye, main har gaya [you won, I lost].” He didn’t speak a word during the three and a half hour journey to Pune. But his execution satisfied Mahale as Kasab murdered more than 166 people, the justice prevailed because the evil was dead.