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Tuesday Mar 05 2019
Web Desk

Pakistani prisoner Shakirullah's brain, heart removed in India: post-mortem report

Web Desk

KARACHI: The heart and brain of Shakirullah, a Pakistani prisoner who was stoned to death by other inmates in Jaipur Central Jail in India last month, were removed from his dead body before it was handed over to his bereaved family via Wagah border crossing last Saturday, a post-mortem report has revealed. 

According to an initial post-mortem report, late Shakirullah's death was caused by blunt force trauma to his head. He was struck so violently that the impact of the blow travelled downwards from his skull.

The post-mortem in Pakistan, done at the Government Allama Iqbal Memorial Teaching Hospital in Sialkot, followed a prior one that was carried out in India before the Pakistani prisoner's body was handed over to his family.

Samples from various parts of the deceased's body have been shifted to the Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) in Lahore for forensic testing.

In this regard, the deputy commissioner has ordered that a six-member medical board be set up to investigate the matter.

Shakirullah was stoned to death by other inmates following New Delhi's move to level baseless allegations against Islamabad of involvement in the Pulwama attack in occupied Kashmir that left more than 40 Indian soldiers dead.

Shakirullah had been in the Indian jail since 2001. He was laid to rest in Jasarwala, his hometown in Sialkot, a day after India returned his body to Pakistan.

Following the Pulwama attack, India commenced a campaign based on hatred and extremism to malign Pakistan on every level possible that, eventually, led to mob-minded nationalists to resort to stone-pelting, which left Shakirullah dead.

The Senate of Pakistan recently issued a strongly-worded condemnation of the murder of Shakirullah, while human rights minister Shireen Mazari said the government was analysing the conventions that apply to this case as well as the best forum(s) on which to take up this issue.

Pakistan had also lodged its protest with India after the inspector-general of police for Rajasthan and in-charge of prisons, Kapil Garg, confirmed the news of Shakirullah's murder on February 20.

The Pakistani prisoner had been eight years into a life term when he was attacked at the Jaipur Central Jail. He was stoned to death following a quarrel, Garg had told AFP.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had commented that the "Indian administration failed to protect Shakirullah".

On the other hand, the deceased's family maintain that the late prisoner was mentally unfit and had crossed Indian territory by mistake during his visit to a festival in Shakargarh.

The Foreign Office of Pakistan had earlier objected over India's no response to the country's request for "post-mortem-judicial" inquiry.

"Failure to protect [the] basic human right to life of Pakistani in its prison raises questions India must answer," FO spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal had said.

Earlier on Friday, Pakistan had handed over Indian pilot Abhinandan Varthaman to Indian authorities at the Wagah border crossing as a "peace gesture" to de-escalate the rising tensions between the two South Asian neighbouring countries.

Abhinandan was captured when his MiG-21 was among two Indian military aircraft shot down by Pakistan Air Force after they ventured into the Pakistani airspace.

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