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Who Will Hang Qasab?

There is not a single hangman left in the country, say jail sourcesWho will hang Ajmal Amir Qasab who has been awarded the death sentence by special court on Thursday? That's the hushed whisper in
PTI May 06, 2010 14:09 IST
PTI
There is not a single hangman left in the country, say jail sources

Who will hang Ajmal Amir Qasab who has been awarded the death sentence by special court on Thursday? That's the hushed whisper in the corridors of Mantralaya and the jail premises, reports Mid Day.

The special court that declared Qasab guilty on Monday awarded him the death sentence today.

In Maharashtra, the Yerwada Central Jail in Pune and the Nagpur Central Jail are the only prisons where convicts are hanged. Jail sources said that if Qasab is awarded the death rap he may be hanged in Pune.

"In Pune, there are already 11 convicts who have been given the death sentence, but are still awaiting execution," said sources in the prison department which falls under the state home ministry.

The President has already turned down the mercy petitions of these convicts.

The state's last hangman, identified only as Jadhav, retired in 1995 from the Yerwada prison but has not been replaced so far.

"Even Maharashtra has sought executioners from other states, but no one has ever responded," said jail sources. "Almost all hangmen in the country have either died or have retired and their kin do not seem interested in continuing with the profession," he added.

The last hanging in India was conducted in 2004. Child rapist Dhananjoy Chatterjee was executed by the 87-year old hangman, Nata Mullick, in West Bengal. Mullick, whose father Shibal, was a hangman during the British colonial days, died in December 2009 after having carried out 25 hangings.

Mullick passed on his wisdom to his grandson, Prabhat, but he is too young for the job. He looks after the cleaning job at the Alipore Central Jail in Kolkata.

So, West Bengal, where the nation's last hanging has taken place, is also without a hangman.