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03 December 2023

Pakistan stays execution of Indian man

By Agencies


Pakistan has stayed the execution of an Indian accused of spying for a month, India's foreign minister said on Wednesday, after appeals for clemency to President Pervez Musharraf.

Musharraf had this month rejected the mercy plea by Sarabjit Singh, who was to hang on April 1.

Singh was sentenced to death in 1991 for spying and carrying out four bomb blasts that killed 14 people, but his family said he was innocent and had crossed the border into Pakistan accidentally in 1990 while he was drunk. India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had intervened in the matter.

"President of Pakistan has stayed the execution till April 30, a postponement by one month," India's foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee said in a statement to Parliament.

Pakistani officials said Singh was arrested while trying to slip back into India after the bomb blasts.

Nuclear-armed India and Pakistan have fought three wars since the partition of British-ruled India in 1947, but they began a peace process in 2004.

Despite better relations, the neighbours remain deeply suspicious of each other. Earlier this month, Pakistan freed an Indian man who spent 35 years on death row in a Pakistani jail on spying charges. (Reuters)