'I will celebrate Diwali now'

Last Updated: Wed, Nov 21, 2012 19:42 hrs

The news of Ajmal Kasab’s execution brought joy and consolation to some of the families of those who bore the brunt of the Mumbai attacks in 2008.

Smita Salaskar, the wife of slain senior police inspector and encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar, said, “With this hanging, homage has been paid to my husband.” Vijay Salaskar was gunned down by the terrorists while rushing towards a scene of attack.

Smita Salaskar told reporters since the Mumbai attacks, she had stopped celebrating Diwali and Gudi Pawda. “I will resume celebrating Diwali now,” she said.

A proud K Unnikrishnan, father of late National Security Guard commando Sandeep Unnikrishnan, who was killed fighting the terrorists, said, “Before anybody could react to the rejection of the mercy petition (of Kasab), everything was over. That is what I cherish.” He added, “Definitely, there is a long way to go for a sense of closure....The perpetrators are still moving around freely in Pakistan and anti-India thinking there is too much. That should come down.”

Eknath Omble, too, rejoiced at the execution. His brother, late assistant sub-inspector Tukaram Omble had helped capture Kasab, before succumbing to Kasab’s bullets. “I am proud and very happy my brother’s efforts have paid off. Ajmal Kasab should have been hanged in public. But I know our law does not permit that.”

Thirteen-year-old Devika Rotwan, who was shot in the leg during the terror attacks, said, “I am very happy. But I would have been happier if this would have been done in public. Wish this had been done on the anniversary of the attack this year.”

Vishnu Zende, an announcer at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus or CST (one of the targets of the attack), said, “His (Kasab’s) hanging is a tribute to all the people who died in the terror attacks.” Zende had helped save many lives by warning about the attack over the public address system.

Ragini Sharma, whose husband S K Sharma, a railway ticket collector, was killed in the attack on CST, said, “The first thing that comes to my mind is what happened is good. We are happy we have got justice.”

Vinita Kamte, wife of late additional commissioner of police Ashok Kamte, who lost his life in the attack, expressed satisfaction at Kasab’s execution. “Though it took a long time, justice has been done to us. The authorities maintained extreme secrecy to carry out the execution and we are satisfied,” she said.

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