–Sessions court orders former police constable’s execution at Lahore jail on Jan 15
–Death warrants for Hayat have been issued thrice previously
LAHORE: A district and sessions court on Friday issued death warrant of Khizar Hayat, a prisoner diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, for January 15.
Sessions judge Khalid Nawaz ordered that the execution of Hayat will take place at Central Jail Lahore.
Hayat, a former police constable, was convicted in October 2001 for killing a fellow policeman, while a trial court had handed him a death sentence two years later.
Following the court’s order, the Justice Project Pakistan (JPP) called for a halt in the execution of Hayat.
“The warrant stands in blatant violation of the orders of the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) that had categorically abstained the authorities from issuing Hayat’s death warrant until the Supreme Court decides the matter of mentally ill death row prisoners in a precedent-setting case currently pending before a larger bench,” JPP said in its press release.
“Executing Khizar [Hayat], while the Supreme Court is still deciding on the question of executing the mentally ill, is not just unnecessarily cruel but also in violation of Pakistan’s international obligations,” Executive Director of JPP Sarah Belal said.
“By obtaining the death warrants of a mentally ill prisoner, the prison officials have paved the way for another wrongful execution. This display of utter disregard towards the orders of the country’s foremost authority on human rights by the jail authorities underscores the need for immediate reform to protect the most vulnerable prisoners on death row,” she added.
In December 2018, the Lahore High Court had dismissed his mother’s petition to stay Hayat’s execution.
Death warrants for Hayat have been issued thrice previously, in all instances his execution was stayed.
On June 10, 2015, a death warrant was issued but the LHC had granted him reprieve at the last minute. In July 2015, a district and sessions judge halted his execution for death warrants issued for July 28, 2015.
Following this, in January 2017, a district and sessions judge in Lahore had issued execution warrants for Hayat. The decision was once again stayed by the high court.
The order had been passed by a division bench of the LHC, headed by Justice Shahid Hameed Dar, on a petition filed by Hayat’s mother Iqbal Bano, through Barrister Belal of JPP.
The lawyer had argued that Hayat had been suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and executing him would violate local and international laws.