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Sarabjit Singh's death: Judicial inquiry initiated

world Updated: May 17, 2013 15:20 IST
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The Lahore high court has initiated judicial inquiry into the killing of Indian prisoner Sarabjit Singh by his fellow prisoners in Kot Lakhpat jail and has appointed justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi as the inquiry judge.

According to a report in The Express Tribune, justice Naqvi is expected to start his inquiry from Friday.

Punjab caretaker chief minister Najam Sethi had earlier sent a letter to LHC chief justice Umar Ata Bandial with a request to appoint a judge of the court to hold judicial probe into the incident soon after the injured Indian convict was admitted to hospital for treatment.

According to the prosecution, Sarabjit Singh, a resident of Bhikhiwind village of Amritsar, had illegally crossed the Indian border at Kasur on August 29, 1990 and was arrested on allegations of conducting four bomb blasts in three cities of Punjab including Faisalabad, Multan and Lahore on July 29, 1990 in an FIR registered against Manjeet Singh.

Sarabjit was given death sentence on August 15, 1991.

Defending Sarabjit, his counsel Awais Sheikh had maintained the stance that Sarabjit was given sentence only on the basis of his confession statement which, according to him, was made before a TV camera and after being tortured, hence having no legal value.

Sheikh maintained till the end that Sarabjit's case was one of mistaken identity. He argued that the FIR was registered against Manjeet Singh but prosecution forcefully presented Sarabjit as Manjeet Singh and got him convicted in a fabricated case.

The Pakistani government had maintained that he was an Indian spy, but Sarabjit's family say it is a case of mistaken identity.