Pak SC bars carrying out death penalty for 3 mentally-ill inmates

The Pakistan Supreme Court on Wednesday barred the execution of three mentally-ill convicts on death row, saying that as it does not “meet the ends of justice”.

The verdict was delivered by a five-judge bench headed by Justice Manzoor Ahmad Malik at the apex court’s Lahore registry, Dawn news reported.

On January 7, the bench had reserved its verdict after marathon hearings on three appeals pertaining to as many mentally-ill prisoners on death row.

The three prisoners, Kanizan Bibi, Imdad Ali and Ghulam Abbas, had spent 30, 18 and 14 years on death row, respectively, while exhibiting acute symptoms of mental illness.

On Wednesday, the bench commuted Bibi and Ali’s death sentences to life imprisonment, while it directed a fresh mercy petition to be prepared on behalf of Abbas.

It also directed the Punjab provincial government to immediately shift the three convicts to the Punjab Institute of Mental Health, Lahore, for treatment.