Seven convicts barred from going to gallows

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LAHORE/RAWALPINDI: Local courts in Lahore and Rawalpindi on Monday barred seven death row prisoners from going to gallows on legal grounds.

According to authorities Rawalpindi Division Bench of Lahore High Court (LHC) ordered acquittal of four condemned prisoners who were awarded death penalty in 2002 Shah-e-Najaf Imambargah suicide attack case in Rawalpindi.

The bench heard appeals of the convicted terrorists’ today and declared null and void the death penalty handed down to the accused by Anti-Terrorism Court in 2004.

The court, ordering immediate release of the accused, observed that they were awarded death sentence over ‘insufficient proofs’.

The accused – Habib Ullah, Fazal Hameed, Tahir and Naseer – were involved in collaborating with the suicide attacker who left 11 dead and 30 injured in the terrorist attack.

Meanwhile, the Lahore High Court suspended death warrants issued for two death row convicts, Muhammad Faiz and Muhammad Sharif, who were facing the noose in two separate murder cases.

The court issued its ordered after hearing appeals of the convicts’ family members who stated in a petition that death warrants could not be issued for the prisoners since Supreme Court is hearing their appeal.

Furthermore, a three-member bench of Supreme Court, headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, acquitted a murder convict Mazhar Hussain who had also been awarded death penalty by LHC.

After hearing appeal of the convict, the bench issued its orders observing that trial court had not thoroughly reviewed all proofs against him, and that the LHC has already released two co-accused in the murder case.

Five Ready To be Hanged 

On the other hand, a local court in Multan issued death warrants for hanging of two death row convicts Ahmed Ali alias Shish Naag and Shabir alias Doctor.

They will be executed on Wednesday in Center Jail Multan where the administration has confirmed to have received the warrants.
Ahmed Ali is involved in murder of two people and Shabir in assassination of District Superintendent Police (DSP) Khanewal.

Moreover, arrangements have been finalised for Jan 13 execution of three convicted terrorists – Shahid Hanif, Talha and Khalil – in Sukkur central jail. They were handed down death penalty for murdering Director Defence Ministry, Zafar Ali Shah.
Their death warrants have been dispatched to jail administration by Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) of Karachi.