Disgruntled, Sarabjit Singh's family returns to India

Published: May 1, 2013
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Sukhpreet Kaur (C), wife of Indian death row prisoner in Pakistan, Sarabjit Singh and Singh's daughter Swapandip (L), along with members of the Akhil Bhartiya Human Rights organisation (ABHRO), hold a candlelight vigil for the good health of Sarabjit Singh in Amritsar on April 27, 2013. PHOTO: AFP

Sukhpreet Kaur (C), wife of Indian death row prisoner in Pakistan, Sarabjit Singh and Singh's daughter Swapandip (L), along with members of the Akhil Bhartiya Human Rights organisation (ABHRO), hold a candlelight vigil for the good health of Sarabjit Singh in Amritsar on April 27, 2013. PHOTO: AFP

LAHORE: Family members of Sarabjit Singh, the Indian death row prisoner, returned to India on Wednesday after spending three days in Pakistan.

The family had arrived in Pakistan on April 28 on a 15 day visa but suddenly left after citing the ill health of Sarabjit’s daughter as an excuse. It was revealed that Dalbir Kaur, Singh’s sister went to India to mobilise a campaign for the return of her brother.

Dalbir Kaur told The Express Tribune that she would meet with United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi and other important figures to get their support in bringing her brother back to India.

Awais Sheikh, counsel of Sindh in Pakistan said the response of Pakistani doctors proved unsatisfactory for Kaur who is now going to try to bring doctors from India. Kaur blamed the jail authorities for the ill treatment of Singh while talking to the media at Wagha Border.

She pointed out that since the barracks of Indian prisoners were separate from those of Pakistani prisoners in the Kot Lakhpat Jail, there is no way the attacks could have happened without the involvement of the jail authorities. She claimed jail officials made rods, bricks and blades available for the attackers so that Singh could be attacked.

Advocate Sheikh said he is planning to file a writ petition in Lahore High Court seeking permission to allow the inclusion of two Indian doctors in the panel of medical practitioners treating Singh in Jinnah Hospital.

The Press Trust of India reported on Wednesday that the Indian Ministry of External Affairs had received confirmation from Pakistan for once-a-day consular access to Sarabjit Singh.

Meanwhile, Radio Pakistan reported that the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Sharat Sabharwal will visit Singh on Thursday.

Singh had suffered a head injury when a scuffle between prisoners broke out last week which rendered him unconscious. He is currently being treated in Jinnah Hospital.

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Reader Comments (28)

  • Syed A. Mateen
    May 1, 2013 - 9:01PM

    It is not clear whether counsel of Sarabjit Singh, Mr. Awais Shiekh holds Pakistani nationality or Indian?

    If he is an Indian national then it is okay, otherwise he should study the cases of Pakistani prisoners in India as what support Pakistani prisoners gets from Indian national lawyers in India.

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  • Khalid
    May 1, 2013 - 10:04PM

    @Syed A. Mateen..

    you might be right but he is Advocate of sarbajit. So it doesn’t matter whether he is Indian or Pakistani. he will try to save him just like a doctor.

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  • Water Bottle
    May 1, 2013 - 10:20PM

    “She pointed out that since the barracks of Indian prisoners were separate from those of Pakistani prisoners in the Kot Lakhpat Jail, there is no way the attacks could have happened without the involvement of the jail authorities. She claimed jail officials made rods, bricks and blades available for the attackers so that Singh could be attacked.”

    It’s obvious that it was a deliberate attack.

    Lady, you are talking about Pakistan which is failed, almost as much as Somalia. Everything in this country is failed. The people, the judiciary, the media, the army, the politicians, the bureaucracy, the cricket team.

    Everything is failed. What did u expect from such a country.

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  • javaid iqbal randhawa
    May 1, 2013 - 10:22PM

    Indians are good propaganda masters. They can blame Pakistan in any case of mishap. Pakistani prisoners in India are at stake also. We must highlight their safety otherwise they can be harmed by same way as Sarbijit was beaten. We must think about it

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  • Taraq
    May 1, 2013 - 10:22PM

    We must admit that its a shameful act on behalf of jail administration who let this happen. Even criminals have rights and extra judicial treatment should not be allowed.

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  • Water Bottle
    May 1, 2013 - 10:25PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:

    “If he is an Indian national then it is okay, otherwise he should study the cases of Pakistani prisoners in India as what support Pakistani prisoners gets from Indian national lawyers in India.”

    Good point Syed. If you had an iota of scruple and honesty left in you, you will start with Ajmal Kasab. Your Pakistani Hero who killed 200 innocent people and was an Indian prisoner.

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  • Doesn't matter
    May 1, 2013 - 10:29PM

    @Syed A. Mateen: Humanity doesn’t have any nationality.

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  • expaki
    May 1, 2013 - 10:33PM

    hope Mr. Singh get well and go back to his family. he has suffered enough. Mr. Awais Shiekh
    sahib, you are a great son of Punjab, who is defending another son of Punjab
    , who irrespective of his acts or any act, is in dire need of help from people with awoken conscious.
    Bless you Shiekh Sahib.

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  • May 1, 2013 - 10:43PM

    what is the fuss about this Sarbajeet Singh? Don’t we have our own issues?

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  • Benjamin
    May 1, 2013 - 10:55PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:
    @Khalid: Yea that’s because money talks.

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  • Insaan
    May 1, 2013 - 11:19PM

    @expaki: hope Mr. Singh get well and go back to his family

    I don’t think Mr Singh can go any where. He is most likely dead. It is a shame Paki doctors did not let the family meet with a brain dead man.

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  • Hasan
    May 1, 2013 - 11:22PM

    In this country, Govt. often failes to deliver, and citizens take it upon themselves to pick-up the slack & fulfill the duty. in this instance, the inmates have done them same. He was sentenced in 1991, after 22 years execution couldn’t be carried out, 22 years of hatred was brewing, which led to a brawl. Most importantly, India hung Kassab & Afzal Guru. I’m no advocate of Kassab, but I do truly believe Guru was innocent. Pakistan had pursued diplomatic route to seek justice, or at the least change Death Sentence to Life Sentence; instead India wasted no time in carrying out the execution. Indian’s should be ashmaed of there govt. who did politics on the name of diplomacy, India was Never serious about Sarabjit’s Freedom, they just manipulated the public in lieu of politcs. Never provided factual evidence on his innocence, instead appealed on humanitarian grounds, while they continued to show there inhumanity by executing Pakistani Prisoners, and didn’t even dare to return the bodies. Even though, I am an advocate against Death Sentences and Executions, I wouldn’t regret nor have any remorse if Sarabjit scumbles to death.

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  • akbar
    May 1, 2013 - 11:35PM

    In 1971 India had 90K Pakistani soldier in the custody. Indian army handed over all the 90k prisoners without hurting a single soldier to Pakistan. During Kargil, India had to bury many Pakistani soldiers who lost the lives in the battle field with all respect and religious rites because Pakistan denied accepting their bodies claiming that they are mujahedeen’s not soldiers (Truth is out now). In Ajmal Kasab’s case, India spent crores & crores to protect him with all facilities until law took its own course and buried his body with all religious rites. But in turn, we have seen how Sarabjith was treated in Pakistani jail, how they behaved after butchering the head of our soldier in LOC early 2013 etc. This is a classic example of difference between a civilised developing country & uncivilised perishing country.

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  • brigtm
    May 2, 2013 - 12:07AM

    @Syed A. Mateen:
    i think his real name is awais singh, this man should have been hanged a long time ago, he was a convicted terrorist and spy. indian apologists should look at what happened to ajmal kasab and afzal guru..

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  • Khan
    May 2, 2013 - 12:08AM

    A death penalty convicted criminal of killing people in Pakistan has become an Indian hero. Where was his humanity when he killed so many innocent people in bomb blast.

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  • a
    May 2, 2013 - 12:51AM

    Why nobody listening to this family….where congress president, vice president go, no comments from them on this issue..busy making comments abt Karnataka for next elections….will nobody listen or take action about greivance of a poor family??

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  • MJ
    May 2, 2013 - 1:42AM

    So this is the end of this drama. He probably left with his family and will live under an assumed identity in India, while a bunch mourn his death.

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  • Saima
    May 2, 2013 - 2:06AM

    I really don’t know if he is a criminal or not but just know one thing that first of all he is a human being regardless what’s his nationality what happen with him is not right at all. just prying ALLAH please give him health and long life Ameen.

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  • Saima
    May 2, 2013 - 2:06AM

    I really don’t know if he is a criminal or not but just know one thing that first of all he is a human being regardless what’s his nationality what happen with him is not right at all. just prying ALLAH please give him health and long life Ameen.

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  • 1984
    May 2, 2013 - 2:33AM

    @brigtm:
    indian apologists should look at what happened to ajmal kasab and afzal guru..
    Indian law convicted Afzal Guru and Kasab and we provided them protection for around a decade and we hung according to our law

    Allowing Sarabjit to get killed by fellow prisoners was hitting below the belt….Not surprising from a country which staged Kargil

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  • Fazalkarim
    May 2, 2013 - 2:39AM

    Crime against Sarbjeet has been committed inside the jail. The jail authorities must bring the culprits before the law and get them punished accordingly. Once justice is done
    , it will relieve the pain otherwise the soul of Sarbjeet will keep haunting us all.

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  • Nero
    May 2, 2013 - 5:11AM

    @ Hasan:

    “but I do truly believe Guru was innocent”. Really? How do you know that? First, if you had taken trouble to do some research, there was no doubt about his involvement. Its the nature of involvement and quantum of punishment which were debated. Second, he happened to be an Indian citizen tried by an Indian court. What has Guru got to do with Sarabjeit?

    “India was Never serious about Sarabjit’s Freedom, they just manipulated the public in lieu of politcs. Never provided factual evidence on his innocence, instead appealed on humanitarian grounds”. Really? What kind of proof was government of India supposed to come with? If you don’t know already, the burden of proof lies on the prosecution and NOT on the defense. Sarabjit’s case is so full of loopholes that a person can’t even be charged, forget prosecution. To top it all, his lawyer, state appointed, didn’t even turn up for the hearing at the Supreme Court. Go check. That’s how his prosecution was confirmed.

    “while they continued to show there inhumanity by executing Pakistani Prisoners, and didn’t even dare to return the bodies”. Prisoners or prisoner? Your hero was killing innocent people on a railway station on camera. There is no shred of doubt about his acts. Pakistan first refused to accept who he was and never asked for the body.

    I am fully cognizant of your hatred for India, but come up some better arguments.

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  • Polpot
    May 2, 2013 - 6:11AM

    Toi carries the headlines that Sarabjit is no more
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Pakistans hatred and fundamentalism has yet scored again.

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  • Water Bottle
    May 2, 2013 - 7:03AM

    @javaid iqbal randhawa:

    “Indians are good propaganda masters. They can blame Pakistan in any case of mishap. Pakistani prisoners in India are at stake also. We must highlight their safety otherwise they can be harmed by same way as Sarbijit was beaten. We must think about it “

    Actually, Indians are civilized. Unlike Pakistanis.

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  • alizha
    May 2, 2013 - 3:45PM

    It saddens me extremely that Sarabjeet was attacked whilst in prison custody. No matter who he was, what he did, he deserved basic human rights. He was charged and proven guilty according to the law, whether fair or unfair, hence should have been prosecuted according to due process of the law. Yes- Indian official will now create big drama because we have given them the opportunity to do so. However, had the pakistani government taken swift action to either prosecute or release him, they wouldn’t have been facing these horrendous accusations which are correct to some extent.

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  • Amarendra Kumar
    May 3, 2013 - 8:24PM

    Sarabjit

    Hammer blows on head and heart
    in a dark smelly cell so long,
    memory phantoms a breath chain bite
    in the thick airproof damp dungeon
    with no room for dream and desire
    or self-pity.

    Muffled sobs keep knocking
    at the cactus breathing tube-
    the only sound or sight of waking,
    till….

    A ton of a hot brick bludgeon
    with a sharp tin cut and thrust
    drives the point home:

    You don’t have to swing
    but to breathe by a bleeding brain hole
    for the gracious gift of homecoming
    going down- down- down.

    Frantic glass keyhole peeps
    and cries and wails not seeping
    into the rocky clinical cubicle
    of the bloodsoaked sample
    in a sinking haze of homecoming,
    warm hugging and clasping,
    momentary magic plug
    to the bleeding hole.

    Body lies on the funeral floor,
    flight cross trail on,across
    the border,
    gash in sunlight,
    bloodred, golden music score
    unfading.

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  • James
    May 5, 2013 - 1:11PM

    @MJ:
    Conspiracy theorist. LOL

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  • James
    May 5, 2013 - 1:17PM

    @Saima:
    Dawn News reported that he was brain dead.i.e he is clinically dead with no hope of ever recovering.So the news that he died of an heart attack was a drama.The man had already died.His wife said that his blood pressure was low,and the doctors were not co-operative.The low blood pressure is a sign that he was dead and the impression was given that he was alive by the ventilator.

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