PESHAWAR, 7 October:The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday upheld the death sentence of Mumtaz Qadri by an Anti-Terrorism Court(ATC) in the killing of former Punjab governor Salman Taseer.

Earlier on March 9, the Islamabad High Court’s (IHC) rejected Qadri’s application against his death sentence under the Pakistan Penal Code. Then he filed an appeal in the apex court for reduction in his sentence which was dismissed by the three member bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa.

The bench remarked that taking the law in own hands in matters such as blasphemy rather than going to the courts, will spread fear in the society.

One of the members of the bench Justice Dost Mohammad Khan said that allowing individuals to deal with such matters on their own is fraught with danger, especially in divided societies like ours, where even ulema are reluctant to offer prayers with members of other schools of thought.

Qadri still has the right to submit a mercy appeal to the president.

Qadri, a former member of Punjab police was sentenced to death by ATC in October 2011 for killing former Punjab governor Salman Taseer in Islamabad’s Kohsar Market. Qadri said he killed Taseer over his loud opposition to blasphemy laws of the country.

——–Compiled from media reports

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