India not to send 26/11 judge to Pakistan
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Last Updated: Thursday, August 05, 2010, 22:01
  
New Delhi: India will not send to Pakistan the magistrate who recorded the statement of lone captured 26/11 attacker but is open to allowing him as well as the investigating officer to appear before a Pakistani court through video conferencing.

The decision is expected to be conveyed by the External Affairs Ministry to Pakistan shortly, sources said here today.

Pakistan had asked India to send the Mumbai's Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate R V Sawant Waghule, who had recorded the statement of lone 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab, to appear before its anti-terror court.

It has also demanded that the IO Ramesh Mahale be sent there for deposition.

Waghule will not be sent to Pakistan, the sources said.

However, if the Bombay High Court permits, he can appear through video conferencing in a Pakistani court without being subjected to cross-examination, the sources said.

A petition is being moved in the Bombay High Court to allow the magistrate to appear through video conferencing.

Similarly, the government has decided to allow Mahale to appear in Pakistani court through video conferencing.

If Pakistan agrees to the proposal of questioning of the IO through video conferencing, it will have to make arrangements for the same, the sources said.

Pakistan has reportedly asked India to respond before Saturday as to whether it would send the magistrate and the Investigating Officer.

Pakistan's contention is that the charges against the seven Lashkar-e-Taiba activists, including its operations commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, are based on Kasab?s statement in Mumbai and hence the magistrate and the IO who were involved in recording that statement should appear before the anti-terror court there.

India has already provided to Pakistan copies of Kasab's statement that was recorded in Hindi and Marathi in the presence of Waghule. An English version is also available with Pakistan.

PTI


First Published: Thursday, August 05, 2010, 22:01


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