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If not Kasab, send his interrogators to Pak: Malik to India

July 14, 2010 16:25 IST

Pakistan has asked India to send its police officers and magistrates who recorded the statement of Ajmal Kasab, the terrorist sentenced to death for his role in the 26/11 attacks, to testify in a local court.

The request was conveyed during a meeting between Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Indian High Commissioner Sharat Sabharwal on Tuesday night, sources were quoted as saying in media reports.

Malik told journalists after the meeting that an FIR was registered in Pakistan against Kasab on the basis of the statement he made in India.

Under Pakistani law, Kasab needs to be presented in the court conducting the trial of seven Pakistani suspects in the Mumbai terror attacks, he said.

"As the Indian government has already turned down a request by Islamabad to send Kasab to Pakistan, therefore, it has been requested to send the magistrates and the police officials who recorded the statement," Malik said.

If the Indian magistrates and police officials do not appear before the Pakistani court, it might declare Kasab a proclaimed offender, he said.

On Saturday, the Rawalpindi-based anti-terrorism court conducting the trial of the seven Pakistani suspects, including Lashker-e-Tayiba operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, issued fresh arrest warrants for Kasab and Fahim Ansari, an Indian national who has been acquitted by an Indian court.

Malik also said he had received a letter from his Indian counterpart P Chidambaram that reiterated India's resolve to jointly tackle terrorism.

"Progress is under way on agreed points between the two countries regarding maintaining regional peace and stability and joint steps against terrorism," he said.

He said the people of Pakistan and India will soon hear "good news" as both countries have chalked out a roadmap to address all contentious issues.

"Pakistan and India have prepared a roadmap and in the coming weeks, people will hear good news, though at this point we have agreed not to disclose details of the roadmap and the planning being done to jointly fight terrorism," he said without further elaboration.

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