My brother is innocent: Sarabjit sister
Jalandhar, June 27: Indian death row convict Sarabjit Singh's sister Dalbir Kaur on Wednesday said his brother is 'innocent' and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari should rethink his decision on releasing him.
Dalbir said she will continue to fight for Sarabjit's release from Pakistan prison.
"We will continue to fight for justice. I know he will surely get released one day," Dalbir said.
"My brother is innocent. He is suffering in the jail for more than 20 years," she said.
Dalbir said law should be equal for all and Sarabjit should be released from the prison like Surjeet Singh.
Islamabad on Tuesday night clarified that it was Indian prisoner Surjeet Singh and not Sarabjit who would be released from its jail in Pakistan, hours after media reports circulated claiming Sarabjit's imminent release.
A Pakistani presidential spokesman late Tuesday night clarified that authorities had taken steps for the release of another Indian prisoner named Surjeet Singh who has been in jail for three decades, according to Geo TV of Pakistan.
"I think there is some confusion. First, it is not a case of pardon. More importantly, it is not Sarabjit. It is Surjeet Singh, son of Sucha Singh. His death sentence was commuted in 1989 by President (Ghulam) Ishaq (Khan) on the advice of (then premier) Benazir Bhutto," presidential spokesman Farhatullah Babar said, quoted the TV channel.
However the statement of Babar clarifying the name mysteriously came eight hours after the report that Sarabjit Singh, on the death row in Pakistan for 20 years over bombing charges, will be released after President Asif Ali Zardari commuted his death sentence on Tuesday.
Reports earlier said "Zardari commuted 49-year-old Sarabjit's death sentence to life term which he has already completed having been in jail beyond 14 years."
The news was extensively reported in Pakistan media and in led to celebrations in the family of Sarabjit in India.
Pakistani human rights activist Ansar Burney told an Indian TV channel that the sudden change in the Presidential stance might be under the pressure of the mullahs.
Sarabjit Singh has been languishing in a Pakistani jail for over 20 years after a Pakistani anti-terrorist court awarded him the death sentence in 1991.
He had been convicted of involvement in a string of bombings in Punjab in 1990 that killed 14 people.
Singh however maintains that he is innocent and he was incorrectly charged in a case of "mistaken identity".
The development came two months after Pakistani microbiologist Khalil Chishty, accused in a 1992 murder case, walked free from an Indian prison after being granted interim bail by the Supreme Court.