This was a chronicle of a death foretold. On Thursday, judge M.L. Tahaliyani awarded death sentence to the terrorist from Pakistan for waging war against India and on four other counts.
Such was the gravity of Ajmal Kasab’s offences, and so heavy the weight of evidence against him, that any lesser punishment would have seemed out of place and unjust to the 166 persons who perished on those long nights of violence in Mumbai in November 2008.
There is, of course, still a chance, in theory, that he may live. He can always appeal for mercy to the President of India. But it is unlikely that his appeal, if one is made, will be heard.
While the verdict is a vindication of the rule of law in India, the judgement and the sentence remain incomplete.
The big fish, those leaders of the Lashkar-e-Taiba who are still at large in Pakistan, have eluded the fair hands of Indian justice. Until they are apprehended and tried, there will be no closure for those who suffered in Mumbai.