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Page last updated at 10:56 GMT, Wednesday, 1 April 2009 11:56 UK

Mumbai suspect lawyer to continue

Anjali Waghmare
Ms Waghmare has been promised police protection

The lawyer appointed to represent Ajmal Amir Qasab, the sole surviving suspect from the Mumbai attacks, has confirmed she will continue in the case.

Anjali Waghmare said she had made her decision after being promised police protection until the end of the trial.

Ms Waghmare was appointed on Monday but swiftly offered to resign after protesters gathered outside her home.

Qasab is charged with murder and waging war against India. He told the court he is from Punjab province in Pakistan.

More than 170 people were killed in the Mumbai attacks. Qasab was arrested on the first day of the attack.

The court has also appointed a second lawyer in the case, KP Pawar. The next hearing in the case is set for 6 April.

'Difficult'

Speaking to reporters in Mumbai, Anjali Waghmare, the wife of a city police officer, said the last two days had been difficult for her and her family.

She said she had the support of her family.

The BBC's Prachi Pinglay in Mumbai says Ms Waghmare appeared more composed and confident than she had done previously.

The lawyer said she hoped that people would understand her decision to perform her duty.

MAIN QASAB CHARGES
Mumbai gunman, identified as Mohammed Ajmal Amir Qasab
"Waging war" against India
Firing at CST train station
Firing inside and outside Cama Hospital
Hijacking of Skoda vehicle
Murder of MV Kuber boatman
Firing at Girgaum Chowpatty beach

Ms Waghmare was appointed by a judge on Monday morning. She offered to withdraw on the evening of the same day.

A crowd of people - many of them from the Hindu nationalist party Shiv Sena - had surrounded her house in Mumbai chanting slogans and throwing stones.

Nine people were arrested in connection with the attack.

Protesters said anyone who represented Qasab would be considered unpatriotic.

After the attacks, Indian lawyers refused to represent Qasab.

Before Ms Waghmare was appointed, another lawyer had withdrawn from the case after intimidation.

'Murder'

The charge sheet relating to November's attacks runs to more than 11,000 pages.

Qasab has been charged under various acts, including murder, attempted murder and damaging public property.

His trial is to be held in Mumbai's maximum-security Arthur Road jail. He could face the death penalty if found guilty.

Officials say the charge sheet against Qasab and other accused contains details of evidence pertaining to how the alleged conspiracy was hatched, how the gunmen entered Mumbai and the training in Pakistan.

Mumbai police say they are confident of their case because of the weight of evidence.



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