26/11 case: Pak panel likely to visit by Jan-end
A Pakistani judicial commission is likely to arrive here by the end of January to cross-examine four witnesses of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, after the Bombay High Court gives its approval.
The four witnesses are the metropolitan magistrate who recorded the confessional statement of hanged terrorist Ajmal Kasab, chief investigating officer Ramesh Mahale and two doctors — of the state-run Nair and JJ hospitals — who conducted autopsies of the nine dead terrorists.
This will be the second visit of a judicial commission from Pakistan. The first commission had come in March last year but — according to mutually accepted terms of reference — the panel did not cross-examine the four witnesses whose statement it had recorded. Therefore the Pakistani special court hearing the 26/11 case there refused to accept the report.
The agreement to allow the second Pakistani judicial panel to visit was finalised on December 25 in Islamabad after several rounds of discussions between a four-member visiting Indian delegation and Pakistani officials.
Now, the Union home ministry will approach the Bombay HC within a day or two to seek its approval for the Pakistan panel's visit .