ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Monday rejected Mumtaz Qadri’s review petition against his death sentence, which was first awarded in 2011 by an anti-terrorism court, for gunning down then Punjab governor Salman Taseer.
Rejecting Qadri’s plea, the court said his lawyers had failed to “establish blasphemy” in the case and also rejected the formation of a larger bench to hear the arguments.
“Mumtaz Qadri has confessed to the killing at all stages and was arrested from the crime scene,” the court said.
“It is our responsibility to safeguard the law and stand by our oaths,” remarked Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, who was heading the three-judge bench.
In Oct 2011, an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Rawalpindi had sentenced Qadri to death on two counts – under section 302 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) – for killing Taseer.
Following the sentencing, Qadri’s counsels had challenged the ATC’s decision through two applications the same month.
The first petition had demanded that Qadri’s death sentence be quashed and the second asked for Section 7 of the ATA to be declared void from the sentencing.
In its ruling on the appeal in March 2015, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) rejected Qadri’s application against his death sentence under the PPC but accepted his petition to void ATA’s Section 7.
In October 2015, the Supreme Court, dismissing Qadri’s appeal against the death sentence, restored the trial court’s “conviction and sentence,” and also overturned the IHC verdict that removed Section 7 of the ATA, which asks for capital punishment for acts of terrorism.
Sep 28, 2016 0
Special coverage on China's Two Party Sessions by The Daily Mail - People's Daily