A convicted 50-year old Indian Prisoner who had been imprisoned for the past 24 years in Kot Lakhpat jail, died due to strange circumstances at Jinnah hospital on Monday.
Sub-inspector Nafees of the Kot Lakhpat jail claimed that the victim’s condition had worsened on Monday morning and had been sent over to Jinnah hospital for treatment. Despite the efforts to treat him, he was unable to survive and died just three hours into being treated in the intensive care unit. The body was moved to the morgue for autopsy by the police.
The victim, Kirpal Singh, was arrested on February 29, 1992, by Pakistani law enforcement agencies for illegally crossing the border. Charges of possession of bomb explosions and spying were laid against him and he was given a death sentence by the court.
Another convicted Indian spy, Sarabjit Singh, in March 2013, was also kept in Kot Lakhpat jail for launching bomb explosions in several districts of Punjab. He was supposedly murdered by two of his suspected prisoners, Muhammad Mudassir and Amir.
Ansar Burney Trust stated that Kirpal Singh had gone missing since 1991 from Mustakhbad Saydan village in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district.
Jagir Kaur, his sister-in-law said that Kirpal, who was a former serviceman, had crossed the border in a state of drunkenness. Without any support or evidence, the family dealt with the painful situation in silence.
The discharge of Kashmir Singh, a former Indian spy, in March this year raised their hopes. Ashwini, Kirpal’s nephew, aged 28 had met with Ansar Burney, Pakistan’s former human rights minister at the Wagah Border on April 2nd to plead with him for Kirpal’s release.
Unfortunately, Kirpal died under strange circumstances on April 11.
As many as 490 Indian and 210 Pakistani prisoners are in jails both sides of the border, according to Ansar Burney Trust. Some have stayed in prison far longer than they’re due. Most are going through the trial process or are yet to be tried. Charges laid against them differ and range from straying across the border to jumping a city-specific visa or spying.
The autopsy of the victim is yet to be done.
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