LAHORE: The district and sessions judge on Saturday halted execution of a ‘mentally-ill’ condemned prisoner Khizar Hayat and sought a report from the prisons department by July 30.
The judge had earlier issued death warrants for Hayat for July 28.
Convict’s mother Iqbal Bano filed a stay application through Justice Project Pakistan (JPP), a non-government organisation working for prisoners’ rights.
JPP’s counsel Sara Belal told the judge that the jail authorities in 2008 diagnosed that Khizar Hayat, 41, had been suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. She said national and international laws did not permit hanging of insane persons.
She asked the court to set aside death warrants and stop the execution of the petitioner’s son.
Hayat was a police constable and arrested for killing a fellow policeman. Shadbagh police had arrested him in 2001 and the trial court awarded him death sentence in 2003.
Earlier, a Lahore High Court division bench had decided the matter of the Hayat’s mental health and allowed the execution after the jail officials had told the court that at the time of filing mercy petition before the president, medical examination of the condemned prisoner was conducted and he was found fit.
The medical officer concerned also told the court that the prisoner was having symptoms of depression for which anti-psychotic medication was provided to him and he was a fit person.
Published in Dawn, July 26th, 2015