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Modi's remarks on Kasab a shot in the arm for Pak

Source: PTI
January 23, 2009 22:41 IST
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Pakistan on Friday sought to take advantage of Narendra Modi's remarks on lone captured Mumbai attacker Ajmal Kasab, claiming that the Gujarat Chief Minister 'agreed' with its stance that India handed over to Islamabad 'mere information' and not evidence on the terror strikes.

Modi had recently attacked the UPA government for asking Pakistan to accept the statement of Kasab as evidence and said that India itself 'does not have a similar provision under its laws'.

On Modi's remarks, Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said "I want to set the record straight. Gujarat Chief Minister Modi has said that mere information cannot be evidence. He agreed with my stand that information is not evidence."

Inaugurating a Forensic Science Conference in Ahmedabad on January 18, Modi had said: "We tell Pakistan that Kasab has given the statement and consider this as evidence as everything has been done from Pakistan. We tell US also that his statement should be considered as evidence."

"What if Pakistan and US tell India that does your law have similar provision, which accepts Kasab's statement as evidence? What can be more unfortunate," he had sought to know.

Gilani, addressing a press conference here, also ruled out handing over of any Pakistani terror suspects to any other nation, saying Islamabad's anti-terror laws would have to be amended to try persons who committed offences outside the country.

"There are some discrepancies in our laws. We do not have an extradition treaty with India. And our Anti-Terrorism Act needs little more alteration," he said.

Gilani was replying to a question about demands from certain quarters in Pakistan for seeking the extradition of Indian nationals like Col S K Purohit who was allegedly involved in the 2007 bomb attacks on the Samjhauta Express train.

He said Pakistan would have to make changes in its Anti-Terrorism Act to handle cases in which an offence is committed outside the country while the case is registered within the country.

Noting that legislation for such changes had not yet been enacted, he said: "We will need some time."

Pakistan has consistently said that it will not hand over to India any of its nationals found to be linked to the Mumbai attacks. It has also said that such persons will be tried within the country under Pakistani laws.

"We will not hand over those who are our citizens to anyone. We will try Pakistani nationals who are involved in any way in any matter according to Pakistani laws. Pakistani citizens will not be handed over to anyone," Gilani said.
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