With Ajmal Kasab’s hanging, a dark chapter of Pak-India friction over terrorism has seemingly come to an end. In India, it was received with cheers as a moment for liberation from terrorism and in Pakistan too the government’s stand was categorically manifest in the words of the Foreign Ministry Spokesman that Pakistan condemns all forms of terrorism. The BJP’s message that the event was a lesson for neighbouring states displays the hostile posturing that has been associated with this extremist organisation. There are, besides, 400 prisoners, including the one guilty of Rajiv Ghandi’s murder that took place in 1991, who are on death row and have yet to meet their fate; the haste with which Kasab has been hanged, therefore, stands in sharp contrast to that tradition.

In the wake of the execution the thought that the conviction was doubtful lingers on; this is compounded for want of conclusive proof. There were quite a few loose ends that kept dangling till the end of the case amid Indian authorities denying a chance to Pakistani judicial commission to probe Kasab to their satisfaction

If one recalls the gruesome bloodshed of the Mumbai massacre, it is enough to send a chill down one’s spine. The need, however, is not to adopt an accusatory posture but to work towards building an atmosphere of peace in South Asia. Terrorism, whether it is state-sponsored, or in any other form, must not be condemned, it should be fought.