The Supreme Court (SC) earlier yesterday rejected a review petition against the death sentence of former elite force guard Mumtaz Qadri for the cold blooded murder of the former Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer.
A three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa took up Qadri’s review petition against the court’s October 6 order for maintaining his death penalty.
During the hearing, which continued for almost 45 minutes, former Lahore High Court (LHC) judge Mian Nazir Akhtar failed to point out any error in the court’s judgement, resulting in dismissal of the review petition over non-maintainability.
Further, Justice Khosa remarked that it was not proved that Salman Taseer had committed blasphemy.
The former commando of the Punjab Police’s Elite Force had challenged the Islamabad High Court (IHC)’s verdict on his death sentence in the country’s top court. Lawyers for Mumtaz Qadri filed the plea in the apex court claiming that the matter was not about murder but provocation.
In its ruling, the Supreme Court also declared the IHC decision of annulling the death sentence under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) null and void.
The sentence was first awarded by an anti-terror court and was then upheld by the IHC before being challenged in the apex court.
Last month, Qadri threatened to commit suicide if he is not allowed to meet his family in a separate room. Earlier, when his brother and father went to meet him at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, they were only allowed to see him through an iron fence owing to security concerns.
However, Qadri protested against the move and threatened to commit suicide if he was not allowed to meet his family in a separate room.
Qadri was sentenced to death for the murder of former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer in Islamabad’s Koshar Market on January 4, 2011.