Zee Media Bureau
Amritsar: Sarabjit Singh, an Indian death row prisoner who died in Pakistan on Thursday a week after a brutal prison attack, was accorded a state funeral in his Punjab hometown of Bhikhiwind on Friday. The last rites were performed by his sister, Dalbir Kaur.
Sarabjit`s body was brought to India from Pakistan last night. The body was brought to Amritsar from Lahore onboard a special Air India flight and was subsequently taken to his native town in a helicopter.
Before handing over the body to the family, a second post-mortem was also conducted on Sarabjit`s body at the government-run Amritsar Medical College in Patti to "know the cause behind his death". The first autopsy was conducted at Pakistan`s Jinnah Hospital where Sarabjit died.
Sarabjit, the second Indian prisoner to die in Pakistan`s notorious Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore this year, was brutally attacked on Friday last week by six fellow inmates when he and other prisoners were brought out of their cells for a break.
The Punjab government has announced a financial assistance of Rs 1 crore for the family of Sarabjit and declared a three-day state mourning. The Centre has also announced ex-gratia payment of Rs 25 lakh for Sarabjit`s family from Prime Minister`s Relief Fund.
Here are the latest updates in the case:
2:36 pm: Sarabjit Singh cremated with full state honours in Bhikhiwind, Punjab. His mortal remains consigned to flames.
2:35 pm: Sarabjit`s sister Dalbir Kaur performs last rites.
2:30 pm: Guard of honour given to Sarabjit Singh.
2:20 pm: Rahul Gandhi, top Punjab politicians attend Sarabjit Singh`s funeral.
2:15 pm: Sarabjit Singh being cremated with full state honours.
2:00 pm: Sarabjit Singh`s body arrives at the cremation ground.
1:50 pm: Guard of honour to be given to Sarabjit Singh.
1:30 pm: Sarabjit Singh suffered massive internal bleeding because of a head injury, according to an initial report of the autopsy conducted in Pakistan.
1:25 pm: Sarabjit Singh`s body being taken to the cremation ground.
1:20 pm: Doctors at Amritsar Medical College likely to brief media at 4:30 pm on Sarabjit`s second autopsy.
1:10 pm: Rahul Gandhi lands in Amritsar to attend Sarabjit Singh`s cremation.
12:10 pm: People pay last tributes to Sarabjit Singh at a local school.
11:20 am: Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi to attend Sarabjit Singh`s funeral.
11:10 am: Sarabjit Singh`s body taken to a local school for people to pay tribute.
11:00 am: Hundreds gather in Sarabjit`s native town to bid him farewell.
10:50 am: There are many prisoners like Sarabjit Singh in Pakistan and government should take a firm stand; unfortunately it doesn`t seem to be serious, says Kirti Azad of the BJP.
10:35 am: Capt (retd) Bharat Verma calls Sarabjit`s death a well planned conspiracy and a clear case of murder.
10:20 am: Till every Sarabjit returns from Pakistan I will not be in peace, says Sarabjit`s sister Dalbir Kaur.
10:15 am: The government should build pressure on Pakistan and get assurance from them for the safety of other Indian prisoners, adds Tewari.
10:15 am: In 2005, the PM had spoken for Sarabjit`s release and since then after every six months this matter was raised by the External Affairs Ministry, says I&B Minister Manish Tewari.
9:30 am: It`s an open violation of human rights under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, says Atul Anjan of the CPI.