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Sarabjit dies, fury and shock in India

delhi Updated: May 02, 2013 21:02 IST
Sarabjit Singh

Reactions poured in as the Indian death row prisoner Sarabjit Singh died of cardiac arrest in a Lahore hospital in the wee hours today after being comatose for nearly a week following a brutal assault by fellow inmates in a high-security Pakistani jail.

Sarabjit sustained severe injuries when at least six prisoners attacked him in a barrack at Kot Lakhpat Jail on Friday, hitting him on the head with bricks. Here are some reactions:

Prime Minister
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh condoled the death of Sarabjit Singh, hailing him as a "brave son of India", and attacked Pakistan for not heeding to pleas for taking a humanitarian view on this issue after the deadly attack on the Indian national in a Lahore jail. "It is particularly regrettable that the government of Pakistan did not heed the pleas of the government of India, Sarabjit's family and of the civil society in India and Pakistan to take a humanitarian view of this case," he said. Read on...


Pakistan said the body of Indian death row prisoner Sarabjit Singh, who died in a Lahore hospital after a brutal assault in jail, will be handed over to Indian authorities after "the early completion of all formalities". The Pakistan government will continue to facilitate the "early completion of all formalities and hand over the mortal remains of the prisoner to the Indian High Commission at the earliest possible", said a statement from the Foreign Office. Read on...

Dalbir Kaur, sister of Sarabjit Singh, gestures as she addresses media representatives in New Delhi. (AFP)

Manish Tewari

What happened to Sarabjit Singh was inhuman, barbaric and not the way in which a civilised state treats its prisoners, information and broadcasting minister Manish Tewari said, labelling the Indian's death as Pakistan's "abject failure". "An Indian prisoner has been murdered in cold blood in the custody of the Pakistan state, and they must be held accountable," he said. Slamming the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for politicising the issue, he said the party did nothing to provide consular access to Sarabjit when it was in power. Read on...

Salman Khurshid
External affairs minister Salman Khurshid said he was "extremely anguished" by the death of Sarabjit Singh in a Lahore hospital following a brutal attack on him in a high-security jail. Asserting that the death Sarabjit Singh has "hurt" people-to-people ties between India and Pakistan, Khurshid hoped that the tragedy will help understand the the cost of "hostility" between the two countries. Read on...

Sushma Swaraj

"It is a cold blooded murder," said BJP leader Sushma Swaraj following the death of Indian death row prisoner Sarabjit Singh in Pakistan. "It is a cold blooded murder. This is not the way civilized nations behave. #Sarabjit Singh," tweeted

Sushma Swaraj


Read on...

Sushilkumar Shinde
Home minister Sushilkumar Shinde met the family members of Sarabjit Singh and assured them to make all efforts to bring back his body. "We are trying our best to get his body as soon as possible. The ministry of external affairs is in touch with the Pakistan government," he told reporters after meeting Sarbajit's sister Dalbir Kaur and other family members. Read on...

Syed Akbaruddin
"#India: Sarabjit's death is, put simply, the killing of our citizen while in the custody of #Pakistan jail authorities," tweeted ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin. The death of Sarabjit Singh is "the killing of our citizen while in the custody of Pakistan jail authorities", said the Indian external affairs ministry. Read on...

Sarabjit should be declared a martyr
Sarabjit Singh should be given the stature of a "shahid" or, martyr, his family has said. Raj Kumar Verka, vice chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, said that Sarabjit Singh's family has said he "should be given the stature of a shahid and his body be accorded the due honours". Read on...

The residents Sarabjit Singh's native village Bikhiwind burn effigies of Pakistan and Indian governments. (Munish Byala/HT)

External affairs ministry

The death of Sarabjit Singh in a Lahore hospital days after a brutal attack on him in a prison was "put simply, the killing of our citizen while in the custody of Pakistan jail authorities", the external affairs ministry said. In a statement, the ministry said India has asked Pakistan to "release the body of Sarabjit Singh so that he can be given a funeral in India and among his own people".

Punjab government
Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, in a statement, said that Sarabjit Singh would be given a state-level funeral after his body is brought to India. He expressed anguish over the death of Sarabjit. The chief minister urged the central government to raise the issue of Sarabjit's death at the international level. Deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal also announced that both daughters of Sarabjit Singh would be given government jobs. Read on...

Narendra Modi

Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi said: "Centre is unable to give a strong answer to Pakistan's inhuman acts". "Both, the Government of India & Government of Pakistan have misled people on Sarabjit Singh issue. The truth on this issue must come out," tweeted

Narendra Modi

, hours after Sarabjit Singh died in a Lahore hospital. "Sarabjit Singh's demise is very sad. May his soul rest in peace. May God give strength to his family to bear this loss."

Read on...

Kiran Bedi

Indian prisoner Sarabjit's death in Pakistan was preventable, said former top police officer Kiran Bedi. "Sarabjit's death inside Pakistan prison was preventable.Need to find out if r Counsulate in Lahore was regularly visiting him?" tweeted Bedi after Sarabjit Singh died in a Lahore hospital where he was admitted following a savage assault on him by fellow prisoners April 26.