Pak law minister says Sarabjit won’t be pardoned if found guilty
Lahore, Oct 6: Sarabjit Singh, the Indian prisoner in Pakistan whom his family claims has been a victim of mistaken identity, will not be pardoned if found guilty, said Pakistan Law Minister Farooq H. Naek who is expected to him today at Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat jail.
The Ministry of Law and Human Rights would review the case of Sarabjit Singh according to the law and Constitution and “he would not be pardoned if found guilty”, said Naek while briefing press persons at the Regional Directorate of Human Rights.
He added that the final authority to pardon any prisoner’s death-sentence was vested in the hands of President of Pakistan.
Sarbajit Singh’s case was being reviewed in detail and its report would soon be presented to the president, The News quoted him as saying.
Sarabjit’s sister, Dalbir Kaur, during her visit to Pakistan in March had explained that the Pakistani government had mistaken her brother for one Manjit Singh, who might be involved in bombing cases in the country, but the fact was that he was Sarabjit not Manjit.
Sarabjit was arrested by the Pakistani security officials after implicating him in bomb attacks in Lahore and Faisalabad which had claimed lives of 14 innocent people.
Naek also urged his Indian counterpart to reciprocate positive gestures being sent from the Pakistani side to the Indian government. He called upon the Indian government to release the Pakistani prisoners languishing in different Indian jails on humanitarian grounds while keeping in mind the plights of their families.
According to the court record, Sarabjit Singh had confessed his involvement in the bomb blasts. According to the record, he was arrested when he was crossing the border in August 1990.
Nine days later, he was produced before a magistrate as ‘Manjit Singh’, a man wanted for acts of terrorism in Pakistan. Before the magistrate, he confessed to his crime.
Sarabjit was originally set to be hanged on April 1 and his execution was initially deferred for 30 days by President Pervez Musharraf. This was done so that the new Pakistan People’s Party-led government could review his case following India’s appeal for clemency. “Under article 45 of the constitution, a pardon can be granted by the President of Pakistan. I will only prepare a report and present it (to the leaders),” he said. (ANI)