In a significant ruling that could affect the trial of seven suspects charged with involvement in the Mumbai terror attacks in Pakistan, a Bench of the Lahore High Court on Tuesday ruled that Ajmal Amir Kasab's confessional statement could not be used against the accused.

Kasab, the lone surviving gunman in the attacks, is being tried in a special court in Mumbai.

The Rawalpindi-based Bench gave the order in response to a petition filed by Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi and other accused who are being tried by an anti-terrorism court for planning and helping to execute the 2008 attacks.

However, the Bench dismissed the plea of Lakhvi and the other accused for acquittal.

The Bench said they could not be acquitted when their trial was under way in the anti-terrorism court.

Violation

Shahbaz Rajput, a lawyer defending some of the accused, said the Bench ruled that the statement made by Kasab to the Indian authorities could not be used in a Pakistani court as it violated Article 43 of the Qanun-e-Shahadat Order of 1984 or the Evidence Act.

“This article states that the statement of an accused can be used against the co-accused, only if they are all appearing in the same court for the same case.”

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