Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram has said India had informed Pakistan that testimonies of the magistrate and key officers who investigated the 26/11 Mumbai attacks could be arranged through a videoconference.

He was referring to Pakistan's demand that they testify in its courts.

Talking to journalists here, Mr. Chidambaram said Pakistan had given a dossier on David Headley, an American citizen of Pakistani origin, who, as a Lashkar operative, had surveyed a number of sites in India where the Lashkar could launch terrorist strikes. “We have given replies to the Ministry of External Affairs, I am sure they would have handed them over to Pakistani government.”

Asked when the mercy petition of Afzal Guru — sentenced to death in the Parliament attack case, would be decided, the Minister said, “Every case will be taken up.” During the National Democratic Alliance regime when L.K. Advani was Home Minister, 14 cases were submitted to the President and no case was decided. “My predecessor sent another 14 cases and two were decided. In 14 months of UPA II, I submitted eight cases and five were decided. Records speak for themselves,” Mr. Chidambaram said.

The Home Ministry report card for August said two mercy petitions — of Piara Singh of Punjab and Shobhit Chamar of Bihar — were decided. Both death sentences were commuted to life imprisonment with a direction that they shall remain in prison for the whole of the remainder of their natural life.

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