UAE: Case of Indians on death row adjourned to Sept

Last Updated: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 - 22:31

Dubai: The hearing in the appeals for 17
Indians sentenced to death for killing a Pakistani man was
adjourned for the third time by a Sharjah Court of Appeals,
saying that it wanted an official interpreter for the
convicts.

The Court fixed September 1 for the next hearing.

"The court did not accept an interpreter arranged by
the Indian Embassy as he had not been cleared by the UAE`s
Ministry of Justice," the lawyer for the 17 Indians, Bindu
Suresh Chettur, told PTI.

The court had also adjourned the case on May 19 and
June 16 as the defendants had complained that they did not
have any interpreter.

The Indians had told the court that they only
understand Punjabi, following which Indian Consulate
authorities were told to provide a Punjabi-English translator.
But as the court proceedings are in Arabic, an interpreter
well versed in the three languages was asked to be made
available.

Chettur attributed the adjournments to the Gulf state
having summer vacations when judges often go on leave.

"We are likely to see more progress only after the
fasting month of Ramadan," she said.

A Sharjah court of First Instance had on March 29
found the 17 Indians, 16 from Punjab and one from Haryana,
guilty of beating a Pakistani man to death and wounding three
others when a fight involving dozens of bootleggers broke out
in Al-Sajaa industrial area in Sharjah in January last year.

An appeal was filed on April 7 on behalf of the
Indians.

About 50 people were allegedly involved in the attack,
in which the Pakistani man was beaten to death with metal
bars.

Amid an outrage in India over the verdict, the
government had asked its consulate in Sharjah to engage a top
lawyer and file an appeal to a higher court.

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna had termed the
death sentence as "very unfortunate" and instructed his
ministry to assist the 17 Indians in filing an appeal and also
bear all the expenses involved.

-PTI



First Published: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 - 22:31
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