New twist in Sarabjit Singh case with arrest of `fraudster`

In a new twist in the Sarabjit Singh case, an alleged fraudster, who the family of the Indian prisoner claimed had carried out the 1990 Lahore bomb blasts, has been arrested in a cheating case.

Updated: Dec 17, 2010, 18:29 PM IST

Panchkula: In a new twist in the Sarabjit
Singh case, an alleged fraudster, who the family of the Indian
prisoner claimed had carried out the 1990 Lahore bomb blasts,
has been arrested in a cheating case.

Manjit Singh Rattu, arrested by police in Chandigarh
yesterday and remanded to two days police custody by a local
court in a cheque dishonour case, on Friday denied any role in the
blasts for which Sarabjit had been sentenced to death in
Pakistan.

Sarabjit`s family had claimed that he was a victim of
mistaken identity as he resembled Rattu who, they alleged,
carried out the bomb attack.

"I am a victim of conspiracy...I have no role in
Pakistan blasts," Rattu told reporters outside the court. "I
do not have anything or any role in Lahore or any other
blast."

However, police maintained that they are not yet
probing the claims of Sarabjit`s family.

"We are not probing that angle. Our complaint is
related to a cheating case," Superintendent of Police Manish
Chaudhury said.

Police said that Rattu had been arrested on a
complaint of Gurjeet Singh, manager of Deep Communications in
Panchkula from where he allegedly brought mobile phones worth
Rs one lakh but his cheque bounced.

Meanwhile, as the accused was produced in the court, a
lawyer Arvind Thakur today submitted before it that Rattu was
"involved in the 1990 blasts for which Sarabjit Singh of
Bhikhiwind village in Amritsar was facing death sentence in
Pakistan".

Police sought Rattu`s custody to recover ten mobiles
which was granted by the court.

Asked about the claim of Dalbir Kaur, sister of
Sarabjit, that he was the person involved in the Pakistan
blasts, Rattu told reporters that "she is telling a lie".

Recently, Awais Sheikh, lawyer of Sarabjit in
Pakistan, had said that he had filed a fresh mercy petition as
it was mistaken identity and the real culprit behind the crime
was Manjit Singh Rattu.

The lawyer had said he has also written to the Chief
Justice of Pakistan in pursuit of reopening of the
two-decade-old case and had gathered fresh evidence of Rattu`s
involvement in the Lahore blasts.

"Manjeet was a fraud and had also been arrested by
the Canadian police and kept in jail for three years. I have
collected evidence on Manjeet`s presence in Pakistan at the
time of the blasts and a photo of his marriage with a
Pakistani woman," Sheikh had said.

PTI