NCP leader Ramesh Kadam replaces Ajmal Kasab in high security cell

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Ramesh Kadam has replaced 26/11 terror attacks convict Ajmal Kasab in the high security cell. Kadam was arrested in August this year, allegedly for misappropriating funds from a corporation that provides financing to members of the Other Backward Classes (OBC).

Ramesh Kadam

The high security jail is meant for dreaded prisoners. Kadam, perhaps, prefers it due to the isolation and comforts it provides. Reportedly, the cell has an air-conditioner, which was installed to ensure that in case of any medical emergency, Kasab could be treated right there.

Sources in the jail said the two-storey cell had been lying vacant since Kasab was hanged on November 21, 2012. Kadam had moved into the ground floor constructed specially for him. The first floor houses four other terror convicts. While the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) member was undergoing trial, the authorities decided to construct a special cell for him so that he was not targeted and killed.

The state-of-the-art cell was designed and constructed inside the Arthur Road jail premises in a record time. The solitary cell is bullets- and explosives-resistant, and is located close to a court building, so that the convict does not have to travel long distance to appear for trial.

For Kasab, the authorities also built a bomb-proof tunnel from the cell to the court to secure him from being exposed. It has CCTV coverage to monitor the inmate’s movements. It is believed that over Rs8 crore was spent on the construction of the special cell, while another Rs1.5 crore was spent on building a special prison ward inside J J Hospital. The construction of the special cell was personally supervised by the then home minister Jayant Patil.

Soon before underworld don Chhota Rajan was picked up, there were talk of him being lodged in the same cell, in case he was brought to Mumbai.