LAHORE: Asia Bibi might have to wait for years for next court hearing of her appeal case against death sentence.
According to details, the defence counsel of blasphemy convict, Asia Bibi had filed an appeal case against her death sentence before the Supreme Court’s Lahore Registry.
Her case hearing was scheduled on July 22; the Apex court temporarily halted her death sentence till next verdict. The three-member bench remarked that it was indispensable to examine the record of the case. However, as things turn out to be, Asia Bibi might have to wait for another six years for a hearing date before the Supreme Court’s Lahore Registry.
According to the Express Tribune, this protracted delay is due to the fact that the SC Lahore Registry is presently hearing appeals of those death convicts who were granted leave in 2009 and earlier.
Nonetheless, Asia Bibi was granted leave to appeal against her death sentence by a three-member bench of the SC in July this year.
According to a Supreme Court official, “The petitions granted leave now might be taken up in another six years.” He further confirmed that SC currently, is taking up appeals that were granted leave in 2009 and earlier.
A criminal justice expert, Aftab Ahmed Bajwa, clarified that the SC’s Lahore Registry was currently taking up the appeals that were granted leave in 2007 and 2008. He added that “She will have to wait for at least four years even if she is granted an ‘out of turn’ hearing by the court.”
Asia Bibi’s health is severely deteriorating in prison, she is said to be suffering from internal bleeding, vomits blood, is unable to eat and has become so weak that she is unable to walk.
Asia Bibi, 50-years-old, Christian woman has been on death row since 2010, when a session’s court convicted her of committing blasphemy and awarded her capital punishment. In 2014, her appeal against the death sentence was rejected by the Lahore High Court. She has been in jail since 2009.