Mumbai: The 8-member Judicial Commission from Pakistan, here to record statements of four key witnesses in the 26/11 terror attacks case, on Saturday concluded proceedings before a local court by taking down versions of investigating officer and two doctors who had done autopsies of the victims.
The statements of these three witnesses were recorded on Saturday while that of a Magistrate - who had earlier recorded the confession of the lone surviving Pakistani perpetrator Mohammed Ajmal Kasab - was taken on Friday.
The proceedings were held in-camera before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate S S Shinde who will now make a comprehensive report and send it along with the statements of the witnesses to the anti-terror court in Pakistan which is hearing the 26/11 case separately registered in that country.
Special Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam, who headed prosecution in the 26/11 trial in a Mumbai court, was present.
The recording of evidence of Indian witnesses assumes significance as it is for the first time that the two countries have agreed on taking legal assistance from each other in a terror case, Nikam said.
Senior Inspector Ramesh Mahale, who had investigated the terror attacks case here, told the Commission on Saturday that the role of Pakistan had surfaced during the investigations. He also pointed out that oral, technical and material evidence linked the case to Pakistan, according to sources close to the proceedings.
They said Mahale told the Commission how Kasab, awarded death sentence in the case, was overpowered by police at Girgaum Chowpatty during the attacks. Mahale also spoke of incidents in which Kasab had shot at civilians and policemen, killing some and injuring many.
He told the Commission that Kasab had confessed his role in the terror attacks voluntarily before a Magistrate.
The Commission later recorded the statements of two doctors who had conducted post-mortem examination on nine slain terrorists and victims of 26/11 attacks. They briefed the Pakistani panel about the cause of their death, the time of post mortem and the number of bullets recovered from the bodies.
Nikam expressed confidence that the prosecuting agency of Pakistan would use the recorded statements of Indian witnesses as evidence to nail the plotters of the attacks who hatched the conspiracy in that country.
The Commission, which arrived here on March 15, had on Friday recorded the statement of Magistrate R V Sawant Waghule who had taken down the confession of Kasab soon after his arrest.
Waghule had told the panel that Kasab had given the confession voluntarily and told her that he and nine others had been sent by Lashkar-e-Taiba to unleash terror in Mumbai.
Kasab and his accomplices had come from Karachi by sea to Mumbai on November 26, 2008, and opened indiscriminate fire at several places, including Hotel Taj Mahal, Oberoi Hotel, Chhatrapati Shivaji Railway terminus and Nariman House, claiming 166 lives.
Kasab was captured alive and tried and convicted by a Mumbai court which sentenced him to death. His appeal against conviction and sentence is pending before the Supreme Court.
The Commission was here to record the statements on behalf of a Pakistani anti-terror court which is currently hearing the 26/11 attack case against LeT commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi and six others. The statements of the Indian witnesses would be used as evidence during the trial in Pakistan.
The Commission is headed by Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali and includes prosecutor Chaudhry Azhar, Deputy Director of Federal Investigation Agency Azad Khan, and defence lawyers Khwaja Haris, Riyaz Akram Choudhary, Fakhar Haayat, Raja Ehassan Ulhakhan and Isaam Bin Haris.