Sarabjit to meet sister after 21 years

Sarabjit to meet sister after 21 years

Dalbir went to Pakistan June 6 through the Attari-Wagah route with the sole purpose of meeting her brother and convince the Pakistan government to commute his death sentence to life imprisonment.

However, the jail superintendent Monday didn't allow her to meet Sarabjit, who is lodged in Kot Lakhpat jail in Lahore. Following this, she filed a petition in the Lahore High Court Tuesday through her Pakistani lawyer Awais Sheikh. The court granted her the permission to meet Dalbir twice during her one-month stay in the country.

“We have talked to bua (aunt) over the phone and she confirmed her meeting with our father today. We are very happy that someone from our family will meet him after a long time,” said Swapandeep Kaur, Sarabjit's eldest daughter.

The younger daughter, Poonam, who was denied visa to Pakistan, said: “We want our father to return home. He is innocent and has spent so many years behind the jail without any fault.”

Sarabjit is languishing in Pakistan jails for almost 21 years after being convicted of staging four bomb blasts in Lahore and Multan in 1990 that claimed 14 lives. Sarabjit's family claims that he had crossed into Pakistan inadvertently in August 1990 in an inebriated state and was arrested there. But police in Pakistan claim Sarabjit, who is known as Manjit Singh there, was involved in acts of terrorism.

Besides, a court in Pakistan has issued a notice to the government, seeking a reply within three weeks on a possible presidential pardon to Sarabjit.  Chief Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry of the Lahore High Court passed the order Tuesday after hearing the arguments of petitioner advocate Rana Ilumuddin Gaz.

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