ISLAMABAD - Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator Rehman Malik has decided that the committee will take up the matter of Samjhauta Express bombing on June 12 to take it to its logical conclusion.

In March this year, a special court in India had acquitted four men accused of bombing the train linking India and Pakistan in February 2007. The blast had killed 69 people including at least 42 Pakistanis.

“The acquittal of those who were involved in Samjhauta Express blast proves Indian duplicity and hypocrisy,” he said.

The victim families had ended their protest in mid of May this year outside Parliament House on the assurance of Senator Rehman Malik that he would be taking up the matter in Senate Standing Committee on Interior.

In the pursuance of above, Senator Malik on Saturday issued a letter to the Secretary Interior stating that chairman committee has converted applications and statements of victims of Samjhauta Express blast into public petitions and the committee will bring it on its agenda of the meeting to be held on 12th June, 2019.

It states that the matter pertaining to Samjhauta Express was brought in the notice of the committee on May 30, 2019 wherein Senator Malik briefed the members about the progress made so far on the issue. He confirmed that the committee would consider the matter thoroughly in the next meeting after receipt of the reply from the Ministry of Interior.

Senator Rehman Malik further stated that a set procedure was being adopted for consideration of the matter.

“The procedure includes that the victims of Samjhauta Express have filed an application in their respective districts of Hafizabad and Sargodha for registration of FIRs which was their legitimate right and it was also the responsibility of the state to take up the matter as 42 innocent Pakistanis were killed in the tragic incident,” the letter said.

It says that a letter was already written to Home Secretary and inspector general of police Punjab including DPOs (district police officers) of Hafizabad and Sargodha for registration of FIRs for missing persons who were travelling in the train on 18th February, 2017. “Ministry of Interior has to transfer the FIRs to Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to investigate the case as per law,” it added.

The letter mentioned that the FIA has already recorded statements of the victim families; however, these two FIRs would become the base of recording the statements of those two eyewitnesses under Section 164 of PPC. Subsequently after its attestation, the state should appoint a state councillor with the directions to file a case in Indian High Court on behalf of the witnesses who were deprived of hearing by the trial court of India. In this trial of Samjhauta Express these prime witnesses were totally ignored which is “abortion of justice” and it is injustice to the victim families, the letter added.

Senator Rehman Malik has reiterated that the matter will also be taken with secretary general Interpol to request the Indian Interpol to provide complete case filed on Samjhauta Express, statements of five accused recorded by the DIG Karakre and attested copy of the trial in the matter.

He said that the Government of Pakistan shall appoint a commission to send it to India through diplomatic channels to ensure that Indian High Court and Supreme Court record the statements of the eyewitnesses and other victim families properly.

He further directed that the FIA shall also write to the Interpol India liaison for deporting brother of Mubashir who was travelling in Samjhauta Express on the day of incident and stands detained till today without any trial and therefore India should deport him immediately.