Sarabjit's family gets passports, to file another mercy plea

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Jalandhar, Mar 25 (UNI) Family members of the condemned Indian prisoner in Pakistan Sarabjit Singh, who is on death row, would file another mercy petition with Pakistan President Prevez Musharraf.

After getting passports for the family members, Sarabjit Singh's sister Dalbir Kaur, who is spearheading a campaign for the release of her brother, while talking to UNI said,''With the formation of new coalition government in Pakistan, I hope something positive will happen in my brother's case''.

She said after getting visas, she, along with other family members, would visit Pakistan and would not only meet Sarabjit but also other Indian prisoners languishing in Pakistani jails.

Dalbir said she had requested Pakistan's caretaker Human Rights Minister Ansar Burney to arrange a meeting with President Musharraf, and he had promised to try his best.

Besides Burney, they would meet former Pakistan premier Nawaz Sharif and would also try meeting Pakistan Peoples Party president Asif Ali Zardari.

Earlier, in the day, Dalbir Kaur, along with her husband Baldev Singh and Sarabjit's wife Sukhpreet Kaur and daughters Poonam and Swapaneel Kaur applied for the passports.

In the evening four passports were handed over to the family members, while one, that of Baldev Singh, was withheld due to some technical problems.

After consulting the External Affair Ministry in Delhi, passport of Baldev Singh was also handed over to him, said Assistant Passport Officer Bakshi Singh, adding that the passport issued to Baldev would be valid for a year only.

Sarabjit Singh, who had been in Pakistan jail for the last 18 years now for alleged involvements in bomb blasts in Lahore and Multan in 1990, was sentenced to death.

He was scheduled to be hanged on April 1 but President Musharraf, acting on the clemency appeal of the Indian Government and his family members, deferred the hanging to April 30.

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