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FIA asks ATC to conduct daily hearings in 2008 Mumbai attacks case

Rawalpindi , Sun, 04 Nov 2012 ANI

Rawalpindi, Nov. 4 (ANI): The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has requested the anti-terrorism court to conduct proceedings in the Mumbai attacks case on a day-to-day basis.

FIA's special public prosecutor Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali said defence lawyers were using delaying tactics in the court, reports The Dawn.

He told the court that sub-section 7 of Section 19 of the Anti-Terrorism Act empowered the court to conduct the trial on a daily basis.

Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) Judge Chaudhry Habibur Rehman issued notices to seven accused - Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the alleged mastermind; Abdul Wajid, Mazhar Iqbal, Hammad Amin Sadiq, Shahid Jameel Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Younas Anjum - and adjourned the hearing till November 10.

In all, 166 people were killed in the Mumbai attacks in November 2008. The FIA's Special Investigation Unit had lodged the case against the said accused on February 12, 2009, and put them behind bars and the ATC, Rawalpindi, commenced proceedings the same month.

On November 11, 2009, then ATC judge Malik Akram Awan indicted the accused.

Of the 45 witnesses, the FIA has produced only 11 before the court for recording of their testimonies and five of them are yet to be cross-examined by defence lawyers.

Khawaja Haris Ahmed, counsel for the accused, accused the prosecution of delaying the proceedings because its case was "very weak".

"The prosecution hid the fact from the defence counsel and the court that the governments of Pakistan and India were in agreement to exempt the Indian witnesses from cross-examining," he added. (ANI)



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