Mohammad Ajmal Amir Kasab, the only surviving perpetrator of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, has filed an appeal against his death sentence in India's Supreme Court. The hearing was adjourned indefinitely Tuesday.
Pakistani national Kasab, 24, was convicted of murder, terrorist acts and waging war on India in May 2010, the BBC reported. A previous appeal in Feb. 2011 failed to overturn the death sentence he received.
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According to a statement read out in the Supreme Court in Delhi today, Kasab maintains he was unfairly convicted.
"I have been wrongly held guilty because I was denied a fair trial. I was denied a counsel," the statement read.
"The prosecution has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the charges against me.
"I may be guilty of killing people and carrying out a terrorist act but I am not guilty of waging war against the state."
Two judges were due to hear his appeal, but one was unavailable, Agence France Presse reported. The case has been adjourned, with no date yet set for the next hearing.
If this appeal fails, Kasab will have the option first to petition the court to review its decision, then to ask the Indian president for clemency, the Wall Street Journal said. According to its India blog, cases involving capital punishment can take months or even years to work their way through the appeals process.
Kasab cannot be executed while his appeal is still in course, the Supreme Court ruled in October.
Public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam told AFP he wants Kasab to face execution, an exceptional punishment in India.
"This is the rarest of rare cases. He should not be entitled to any mercy."
Kasab was captured on surveillance footage opening fire and throwing grenades into Mumbai's main train station, during a three-day attack that left 165 people dead across the city in November 2008. He and an accomplice killed 52 people in the station alone. The nine other attackers were killed by police fire.
Kasab originally denied the charges, but later pleaded guilty. In his earlier appeal, he argued that he was brainwashed into committing the murders by religious extremists and should not be executed because of his young age, the Times of India reported.
He is currently being held in solitary confinement in a Mumbai jail.
Pakistan wanted Kasab to testify in its own inquiry into the attacks, according to AFP. However, he is not on the list of witnesses to be cross-examined when a Pakistani judicial commission visits India in early February to gather evidence.
The Indian government has denied Pakistan access to Kasab, the WSJ said, because it suspects the Pakistani authorities of involvement in the attacks.
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