New Delhi: The Ministry of External Affairs has denied claims in Pakistani media that the Indian High Commission officials were consulted by Pakistani authorities before Sarabjit Singh was taken off ventilator support resulting in his death late on Wednesday night at Lahore's Jinnah Hospital.
Sarabjit's family members also claimed that they came to know of his death from the Pakistani media and nothing was communicated to them officially.
Meanwhile, Pakistan said that it will send Sarabjit's body back to India after hospital procedures are complete and the autopsy completed. A special team of doctors has been formed to conduct the autopsy.
The 49-year-old Sarabjit had been battling for his life at Lahore's Jinnah Hospital after he was brutally attacked, allegedly by fellow prisoners inside Kot Lakhpat Jail on April 26, 2013.
Even though there was been speculations that the attack on Sarabjit was planned, Pakistani government sources denied that there was any conspiracy. "This is something that is very unfortunate. The jail staff wasn't vigilant. There is no doubts there were lapses. Action has been taken against several officials. We don't think there was any conspiracy," said the sources.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called him a "brave son of India" and called for action against those involved in the murderous attack on him inside a Pakistani jail where he had been housed after being convicted of alleged involvement in a string of bomb attacks in Punjab province that killed 14 people in 1990 and spent about 22 years in Pakistani prisons.
"I am deeply saddened by the passing away of Sarabjit Singh. He was a brave son of India who bore his tribulations with valiant fortitude. The criminals responsible for the barbaric and murderous attack on him must be brought to justice. It is particularly regrettable that the government of Pakistan did not heed the pleas of the government of India, Sarabjit's family and of civil society in India and Pakistan to take a humanitarian view of this case. May his soul be granted the peace that he could not enjoy in life. Government will make the arrangements to bring his remains home and for his last rites to be conducted in consultation with his family. The nation shares their profound grief with them," Manmohan Singh said in a statement.