Kasab is over 20 years old – medical examiners tell court


Mumbai : Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist captured alive after the 26/11 attack on Mumbai, is over 20, according to a medical report submitted here Tuesday before the Special Court hearing the terror attacks trial.

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Special Judge M.L. Tahilyani, who had ordered the medical test last Friday to determine Kasab’s age, will give his ruling on the matter Wednesday, Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam told reporters after Tuesday’s hearing.

The order to carry out the medical test had come after Kasab claimed in court that he was below 18 and should be tried in a court meant for juveniles.

The medical report submitted in court Tuesday is based on two separate tests conducted at Mumbai’s Sir J.J. Hospital. Kasab underwent a dental and bone test to determine his age.

The tests have revealed that Kasab was not a minor – as claimed earlier through his lawyer S.G. Abbas Kazmi – at the time of the Nov 26, 2008 attacks.

Apart from the medical test, two witnesses testified in court in the matter Tuesday. Swati Sathe, superintendent of the Arthur Rd central jail where Kasab is being kept, told the judge that at the time of his admission, Kasab had told her he was 21 years old.

The doctor at Mumbai’s Nair hospital who had treated Kasab on Nov 27 last year also told the court that at that time, Kasab had said he was 21 years old. The doctor was identified only as Raghavan.

In view of the confusion created by Kasab’s claims, Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam had moved an application last week seeking directions from Special Judge Tahilyani to medically verify the age of the accused.

Accepting the application, the Special Judge had ordered that the medical reports should be submitted Tuesday.

Nikam had told the court Kasab had given his age as 21 on three different occasions – once to the police and jail authorities, once to the doctor who examined him and again to the magistrate before whom he recorded his confession statement.

Moreover, Nikam said that the prosecution had other evidences to prove that Kasab was not a minor.

Terming the matter as a ‘delay tactic’, he had sought the court’s directions on settling Kasab’s age issue finally since the prosecution wanted to frame the charges against Kasab.