City anchor: News came as a big surprise: Ghadge

The news of the hanging of Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab came as a big surprise to Deputy Police Commissioner (DCP) Tanaji Ghadge. It was Ghadge's interrogation which helped identify that Kasab was a Pakistani and was from the LeT.

"I did not know then if he was an Indian or a foreign national," he said on Wednesday, as he recalled those 40 minutes when he "did not leave breathing space for Kasab to think", even as the Pakistani gunman lay on a bed in a civic hospital. Ghadge's interrogation gave many initial leads and ensured justice to the victims of the three-day rampage.

"It came as a surprise, a huge surprise. Slowly, it sunk in. It's like my government's way of telling the world that we have a legal system in this country. India stood the test and it was a huge message we gave to the world. Suddenly, I didn't know what to say, what to do. The news hit me," said Ghadge, who heard the news on the television as he was leaving for a meeting.

A leaked footage of him questioning Kasab went viral soon after, with international media travelling to Mumbai to interview him. "They keep coming. Some from strange countries. That is how big the attack was," he added.

Narrating those crucial minutes, Ghadge said he did not have anything prepared. "Interrogation is always done when you know who is on the other side. Here, we had a gunman with no background. I was clear in my head that I was not supposed to be aggressive. We had to get to the root of the attack, understand his nationality, his terror outfit and everything remotely connected to the attack," he said.

"I kept leading him, ensuring that every answer gave me the next question. The oldest trick of the book was used to ensure he does not get space to think," said Ghadge, adding, "he never looked scared. He just went answering. He never reacted and clearly showed he was trained."

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