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Punjab assembly mourns Sarabjit's death, terms him martyr

Chandigarh, May 3, 2013, (IANS) :

A special session of the Punjab assembly Friday paid homage to Sarabjit Singh, the Indian prisoner who died after a murderous attack in a prison in Pakistan.

The assembly passed a resolution describing Sarabjit  Singh as a "martyr of the nation".
The assembly mourned the death of Sarabjit Singh and  members stood in silence to pay homage to him. No discussion took  place in the assembly in this regard.

Sarabjit received fatal injuries in Lahore's Kot Lakhpat  jail April 26 when he was brutally assaulted with  bricks and plates.

He had been arrested in Pakistan after crossing the  international border in August 1990. His family said he was inebriated at the time. Pakistan charged him with being  an Indian spy who had carried out bomb blasts in Lahore and Multan in 1990,  which left 14 people dead and many others injured. He was awarded the death penalty  by Pakistani courts but his hanging was stayed indefinitely in April 2009.

Pakistani security agencies said that he was Manjit  Singh who was responsible for the blasts. His family claimed that his was a case  of mistaken identity and he had nothing to do with the blasts in  Pakistan.

The assembly session had originally been summoned by the  Punjab governor to discuss the situation arising out of the central government's  move to impose wealth tax on
agricultural land falling within eight kilometres of urban  centres.

However, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram  clarified in the Lok Sabha that no wealth tax was being imposed on agricultural land  and said that an amendment had been brought in the Income Tax Act to set the  matter to rest. Following this, not much was left to discuss in the emergency  session of the Punjab assembly Friday.


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