Four family members of Indian death row prisoner Sarabjit Singh will cross over to Pakistan today, to visit him in a Lahore hospital where he has been admitted after a brutal assault
Also, two retired Indian judges, part of a joint India-Pakistan panel looking after each other’s prisoners’ condition will visit Sarabjit in two days.
Retired Justices KS Gill and MA Khan and their Pakistani counterparts, all members of India-Pakistan Joint Judicial Committee of Prisoners, had visited the Karachi jail yesterday to meet Indian prisoners, see their conditions and prison records and whether their release could be expedited.
The Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi issued the visas last evening as a special case. Sarabjit’s sister Dalbir Kaur said, “We will cross over to Pakistan on foot from the Attari-Wagah joint check-post between India and Pakistan. Sarabjit’s wife Sukhpreet Kaur and daughters Swapandeep and Poonam accompany Dalbir.
Sarabjit was admitted to Lahore’s Jinnah hospital after being assaulted by fellow prisoners in Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat prison on Friday. Doctors said that he is in coma and his condition is ‘critical’.
Sarabjit suffered critical head injuries in the assault by four to five prisoners with bricks and plates.
The family members met Raj Kumar Verka, vice chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, to demand that their request for visas to Pakistan be submitted with the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi. Verka flew to New Delhi yesterday afternoon from Chandigarh, carrying with him documents to facilitate visas for Sarabjit’s family.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the attack on Sarabjit was very sad.
He reportedly suffered critical head injuries in the assault. He was attacked with bricks, sharp objects and plates.
Sarabjit has been on death row in Pakistan since 1990, after being convicted by Pakistani courts for bomb blasts in Lahore and Multan cities, which left 14 people dead.