Sarabjit’s case under consideration: Pakistan

June 27th, 2008 - 7:54 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Pervez Musharraf

New Delhi, June 27 (IANS) Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi Friday said his government was “considering” India’s plea for clemency for Sarabjit Singh, the Indian death row prisoner convicted for alleged complicity in terror attacks in Multan 17 years ago. “Sarabjit Singh’s case is under consideration,” Qureshi told reporters when asked whether Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani’s recent announcement asking President Pervez Musharraf to commute death sentences for all prisoners would help Sarabjit Singh.

Hopes for Sarabjit Singh brightened when Gillani came out with this proposal, but evaporated as quickly when it became clear that the proposal applied to only those not involved in crimes like terrorism, bombings and spreading sectarian hatred.

The apex court in Pakistani sentenced Sarabjit Singh to death for his alleged involvement in four bomb attacks that killed 14 people in 1990.

During their delegation-level talks, the two sides decided that a joint judicial committee comprising retired judges of both countries would visit India next month to make further recommendations on issues concerning prisoners and fishermen in custody.

The Indian chapter of the judicial committee visited jails in Pakistan early this month.

“The agreement on prisoners should be followed in both letter and spirit,” Qureshi, who began his three-day visit to India, said after after holding talks with his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee.

He was alluding to an agreement on providing consular access to prisoners in each other’s country inked by the two countries last month.

India and Pakistan will exchange new lists of prisoners held in each other’s jails on July 1 as part of efforts aimed at ensuring the humane treatment and speedy release of prisoners.

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