ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has written another letter to India stating that its judicial commission will visit Mumbai to record the statement of officials linked with the Mumbai attacks, officials said. The commission’s freshly scheduled visit has been slated for February 15 to February 25, members of the commission toldThe Express Tribune.
“It will be an opportunity for us to remove uncertainty surrounding the fate of the 26/11 trial in both India and Pakistan,” said senior prosecutor Azhar Chaudhry.
Last week, Islamabad conveyed to New Delhi that the judicial commission could not visit Mumbai because of ‘legal complications’. The visit was proposed for February 3 to February 6. The defence counsel had raised issues related to the notification issued by the government for the visit.
“This visit will pave the way for the court to proceed with the 26/11 trial against six accused in Pakistan,” observed Khawaja Haris Ahmed, counsel for Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi.
New Delhi is considering the request seriously and will reply to Islamabad after nominating a new presiding officer in Mumbai by next week, hoped a senior diplomat of the Indian High Commission in Pakistan.
Haris added, “The statement of Indian officials will be recorded under Pakistani laws”.
The final schedule for the proposed visit will be presented in the court on February 14, said Chaudhry, who will head the prosecution panel in India.
The Rawalpindi Anti-Terrorism Court had issued directions for the constitution of a commission, authorising a defence and prosecution panel to record evidence in India. Haris will be heading the defence panel. An official of the court will also accompany the nine-member judicial commission.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 12th, 2012.
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