The recent release of the biographical film Sarabjit, produced by Vashu Bhagnani, starring Randeep Hooda and Aishwarya Rai, has once again opened up conversation about supposed ‘Indian Spy’ Sarabjit Singh. While the media has been going gaga over the performance of Randeep Hooda who plays the role of Sarabjit, it’s important to know some facts about his life and events that led upto his death in a Pakistani hospital.
Here are 5 Things You Must Know About ‘Indian Spy’ Sarabjit Singh:
1. Early Life:
Sarabjit was born Bikhiwind in Punjab, along the Indo-Pak border in 1963. As a youngster, he loved wrestling and taking care of rare pigeons, along with spending most of his day in the fields.
Sarabjit married Sukhpreet Kaur early in life, with whom he had two daughters – Swapandeep and Poonam Kaur. His sister Dalbir Kaur would become one of the front runners of the fight for his release right from the time of his arrest in 1991, till his death in 2013. Another woman by the name of Baljinder Kaur claimed to be real Sarabjit’s sister, but no evidence was found to prove the same.
3. Arrest and Prosecution:
He was caught on an un-marked Indo-Pakistani border area in Pakistan when he mistakenly strayed into Pakistani territory, leaving no trace of his disappearance for his family. A year later they received a letter from him stating that he had been arrested and given the death penalty after being convicted of spying and carrying out a bombing. He claimed that he had been arrested under the name of Manjit Singh, a clear case of mistaken identity.
Two months after the execution of Afzal Guru, Sarabjit Singh was reportedly attacked on 26th April, 2013 at around 4:30 pm in Central Jail Lahore by fellow prisoners with iron rods, blades, metal sheets and bricks. He was admitted to Jinnah Hospital in a critical condition with severe head injuries and a broken backbone. On May 1st, 2013 he was declared brain dead by doctors and on May 2nd he died after his ventilator support was removed. Dalbir Kaur said that doctors attending to her brother were being dishonest and hiding facts and that she had seen ink on his left thumb.
The Government of Punjab declared a three day mourning over Singh’s death and provided a one crore compensation to his family members.
Following his death, on May 3rd 2013, a Pakistani prisoner in a Jammu jail was mercilessly beaten up by Indian prisoners, who eventually died due to multiple organ failure in a Chandigarh hospital.