Basit asks Delhi to punish Samjhauta Express blast culprits

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Indian court summons 13 Pakistani witnesses

New Delhi

Pakistani High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit has once again asked India to bring perpetrators of the Samjhauta Express blast to justice.
He was speaking at ‘India Today Conclave 2017’ organised in New Delhi.
To a question regarding probe into Mumbai attacks case, Abdul Basit said: “It is a very complex case. The crime was committed in India whereas the trial is taking place in Pakistan and these trials do take time. I would not like to offend anyone here but how much time it has taken for India to try those perpetrators of the Samjhauta Express blast.”
“Our suggestion, our submission to our Indian friends is that please do not jump the gun. The trial is underway which would require cooperation by the two governments and I hope as I said earlier the two governments are in touch with each other with a view to expediting the trial,” he added.
Basit insisted that bilateral cooperation is a must in order to bring the perpetrators to justice.
Abdul Basit said Pakistan is being destabilized through Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, a special Indian National Investigation Agency court has summoned 13 Pakistani witnesses for deposing before it in connection with the 2007 Samjhauta Express blast case in which 68 people were killed.
The NIA spokesperson said the Pakistani witnesses are required to attend the trial court at Panchkula in Haryana from July 4 onwards. The summons to the witnesses will be sent through Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of External Affairs, he said.
According to the laid-down procedure, the summons will be sent to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad which will hand over them to the Pakistani foreign ministry.
Sixty-eight people were charred to death in the blasts in two coaches of Samjhauta Express in Panipat on 18 February 2007.
The NIA has filed a charge sheet against several people, including Swami Aseemanand, who recently walked free in the Ajmer Dargah blast case. ——INP