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HindustanTimes Wed,23 Jul 2014

India hopes for a mature reaction from Pak parties

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, November 22, 2012
First Published: 01:24 IST(22/11/2012) | Last Updated: 01:29 IST(22/11/2012)

Mainstream parties in Pakistan will not make an issue out of the execution of 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab though extremist elements there may use it to whip up passion, New Delhi feels.

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Official sources said Kasab's hanging would in no away come in the way of 26/11 investigations taking place in Pakistan, including the visit of a judicial commission, whose schedule is being finalised. Islamabad has always maintained Kasab is a non-state actor.

"We need to watch out these fringe elements, extremist outfits, perhaps the outburst of hardcore religious parties - whether they could attempt to make a martyr out of a mass murderer," an official source said.

"We have the rule of law in our country and similarly we hope and expect that the rule of law will prevail in Pakistan as well. I think there is not a vast difference between criminal procedures in our country and Pakistan," said external affairs minister Salman Khurshid.

The commission will be allowed to cross-examine four witnesses - the magistrate who recorded Kasab's statement, the 26/11 investigating officer and the two doctors who conducted the post-mortem on the terrorists who were killed by the security forces.

Public reaction from Pakistan was tempered.

Foreign policy analyst Zafar Hilaly said the hanging spoke volumes for India's determination to bring those guilty in the Mumbai attacks to justice. "In Pakistan, most of those accused of terrorist activities are let off for want of evidence. It is lamentable."

However, former human rights minister Ansar Burney said capital punishment should be done away with. He also volunteered to bring the body of Kasab to Pakistan if his family wanted.

(With inputs from Islamabad)


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