India upset as Pakistani court deems 26/11 panel's report illegal
Upset over the ruling of a Pakistani court on the 26/11 case, India on Tuesday said evidence collected by a Pakistani judicial commission in India had evidential value to punish those involved in the worst ever terrorist attack in the country.
"Our belief is that the evidence collected by the Commission is of evidential value," Home Secretary RK Singh told reporters in Delhi.
He was reacting to the ruling of a Rawalpindi court on Tuesday which said all findings of a judicial commission that visited India were illegal and could not be made part of the evidence against the 26/11 accused.
The court is hearing the terror case against seven 26/11 accused, including Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi.
Singh said New Delhi was aware of the ruling of the Pakistani court and would seek a copy of it from the authorities there through the Indian High Commission in Islamabad.
"After we go through the judgement we will discuss with the Pakistan government as to what they propose to do about it," he said.
In a setback to the prosecution of seven suspects charged with involvement in the 2008 Mumbai attacks, judge of the Rawalpindi based anti-terrorism court no. 1, Chaudhry Habib-ur -Rehman said in an order that all the proceedings and the report of the Pakistani judicial commission that visited Mumbai in March were "illegal".
The lawyers defending the accused had opposed the report of the Pakistani commission, saying it had "no legal value" as the panel was not allowed to cross-examine witnesses during its visit to Mumbai.
The eight-member commission, which included prosecutors and defence lawyers, visited Mumbai and interviewed a judge, a senior police officer and two doctors who conducted the autopsies on the terrorists bodies involved in the attacks and their victims.
Indian officials had said that cross-examination of the witnesses was not allowed in line with an agreement between New Delhi and Islamabad.