Lahore: A Pakistani judge holding the trial of two accused involved in the brutal murder of Indian national Sarabjit Singh at a prison here has been transferred.The judicial authorities transferred Justice Shahzeb Saeed.
"The new judge - Justice Nasir Rana - will take up the case at the Kot Lakhpat Jail. The next date of hearing will be fixed by the court office," a court official told PTI. The murder trial of Sarabjit began in January, 2014 and subsequently his two alleged killers - Amer Sarfraz alias Tamba and Muddassar Bashir - were indicted.
Both the accused who were also death-row prisoners had allegedly attacked Sarabjit with sharp-edged weapons when he was being moved from one cell to another in the Kot Lakhpat Jail in April, 29, 2013.
He succumbed to his injuries at the Jinnah Hospital on May 2, 2013.
Amir and Muddassar denied the murder charges when they were charge-sheeted. However, earlier they had confessed to the murder of Sarabjit before a one-member judicial commission constituted to probe the murder. "We wanted to take revenge from him (Sarabjit) for killing the Pakistanis in bomb blasts in Lahore and Faisalabad," they had said.
The commission's report has also been submitted to the trial court.
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan had declared Sarabjit's murder "planned one".
Sarabjit was awarded death sentence on charges of spying and killing at least 14 people in bomb blasts in Punjab province in 1990.
His family, however, said: "He was the victim of mistaken identity and had inadvertently strayed across the border."His mercy petitions were rejected by the courts and former President Pervez Musharraf.
The then Pakistan People's Party-led government had put off Sarabjit's execution for an indefinite period in 2008.