Khalil Chisti’s release to take a few days

April 9th, 2012 - 10:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh Ajmer, April 9 (IANS) It will take at least a couple of days for 80-year-old Pakistani prisoner Mohammad Khalil Chisti to step out of the Ajmer Central Jail in Rajasthan even as the Supreme Court granted him conditional bail Monday, sources said.

The apex court order will reach the Rajasthan High Court in Jaipur from where it will be forwarded to the district court in Ajmer, about 150 km from the state capital, sources in the Ajmer Central Jail told IANS.

Chisti will have to arrange two witnesses, hand over his passport and file an affidavit in the district court saying that he would not leave Ajmer before he is released, sources added.

“Chisti’s lawyer from New Delhi had informed him over phone that he has been granted bail. However, the formalities will take at least two days,” said a jail officer.

Chisti, a virologist in the Karachi Medical College, was sentenced to life imprisonment last January after a 18-year-long trial in a murder case. He moved the Rajasthan High Court against the lower court’s verdict, but his plea was rejected.

Hopes for Chisti’s release had emerged when (now retired) Justice Markandeya Katju of the Supreme Court last April requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to release the Pakistani prisoner on “humanitarian grounds”.

Acting on Justice Katju’s appeal, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had approved the mercy plea of Chisti and sent it to the governor for final clearance.

Some prominent non-government organisations and social activists are supporting Chisti’s release.

Chisti and some others had been accused of killing a man, identified as Irshid, in a fight in April 1992. Chisti was on a visit to Ajmer for offering prayers at the dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti at the time.

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