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LHC on Friday halted the execution of a death row convict

02 January, 2015

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LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday 2 January 2015 halted the execution of a death row convict named Faiz Ahmad.

A two-member member bench of the LHC headed by Justice Abdus Sami Khan and including Justice Sardar Tariq Masood stopped the execution in response to a petition filed by Ahmad's counsel Abdul Khaliq.

Khaliq had submitted an application in the LHC, saying his client's appeal against the death sentence was pending in the Supreme Court since 2009 and therefore his death warrant must be set aside by the court.

Earlier on Dec 24, an anti-terrorism court (ATC) had issued Ahmad's death warrant on an application filed by a superintendent of Faisalabad jail. The date for Ahmad's hanging was set for January 14.

The superintendent had stated that condemned prisoner Ahmad was awarded the death penalty in 2006 for killing Lance Naik Tariq Mahmood in Nankana Sahib.

The court halted the execution today and said the ATC must submit an application in the LHC clarifying as to why a death warrant was issued for his execution on Dec 24 when his appeal has been pending with the apex court since 2009.

So far seven convicts have been hanged since the lifting of a moratorium on death penalty by the government after the Peshawar school carnage.

On Dec 17, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had lifted the moratorium on death penalty after the attack on Peshawar's Army Public School that killed more than 140 people — including 134 school children.

The moratorium was imposed by former president Asif Ali Zardari during the tenure of the Pakistan Peoples Party government.

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