Rawalpindi: Court on Tuesday disposed of a petition challenging an anti-terrorism court’s decision to allow the constitution of a commission to visit India and record the statements of key officials who investigated the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
The Rawalpindi bench of the Lahore High Court disposed of the petition filed by Khwaja Sultan, the counsel for LeT commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, “as it was not pressed”.
Sultan had filed the petition after the anti-terrorism court conducting the trial of seven Pakistani suspects charged with involvement in the Mumbai attacks, including Lakhvi, had allowed the formation of the commission to visit India.
Anti-terrorism court Judge Shahid Rafique had rejected objections from defence lawyers to the formation of the commission, which is expected to go to India to interview key officials like the police officer who led the investigation of the Mumbai attacks and the magistrate who recorded the confession of Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving attacker.
Khwaja Sultan told PTI that he did not press the petition in the High Court as no notification had been issued so far by either the Pakistan government or Indian authorities about the recording of statements of people related to the Mumbai attacks by the Pakistani commission.
“Since there has been no progress in the matter, the defence thought there was no need to press the court on the petition as it may cause further delays in an already delayed case,” Sultan said.
Chief prosecutor Chaudhry Zulifqar told PTI that the government is likely to notify the constitution of the commission within a week.
Zulifqar said, “The Indian authorities have allowed us to record the statements of four persons — two officials and two doctors,” he said.
The commission is likely to consist of three persons, one each from the prosecution and defence teams and one from the Foreign Ministry.
Earlier, the prosecution had wanted to record the statements of over 20 people in India but Indian authorities did not agree to this, Pakistani officials claimed.