The top court has accepted the plea of Mumtaz Qadri, who had killed former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer over alleged blasphemy remarks for regular hearing and adjourned the hearing till the month of October.
After hearing the arguments of Qadri’s lawyer, the three judge bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa framed five questions in this matter for consideration, therefore Mumtaz Qadri’s appeal was allowed and leave granted.
Firstly, did any utterance of the former governor Punjab in fact amount to blasphemy?
Secondly, if the petitioner did think the governor had committed blasphemy, did petitioner in his own private capacity have the right to kill the governor?
Thirdly, even if he was motivated by religious sentiment, still the petitioner could kill at a time when he was performing official duty as a security guard.
Fourthly, if the petitioner had confessed to the killing of deceased before the trial court then would it not attract sections 302A and 304 of PPC, which carriy the punishment of death and have no alternative sentence.
Fifthly, in case the petitioner’s conviction is not entertained by this court then are there any mitigating circumstances available warranting reduction in the sentence.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 15th, 2015.
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