In letters to Sonia Gandhi, Sarabjit feared he may be killed in jail

In a series of letters to UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, his sister Dalbir Kaur and daughter Poonam in August last year, Sarabjit Singh had expressed fears that he may be killed at Kot Lakhpat Rai Jail in Lahore. In his letters, he had alleged that some officials in Pakistan were "torturing him mentally" with the intention of making him "mentally ill or killing him".

Friday's attack on Sarabjit has brought the focus back on jail officials, who are now being accused of failing to ensure the convict's security.

On June 26, 2012 it was reported by the Pakistani media that President Asif Ali Zardari had commuted Sarabjit's death sentence and that he was being released. The Pakistani government, however, later retracted the pardon by the saying that there was a "confusion" and another prisoner, Surjeet Singh — who was pardoned in 1989 — was being released.

In the letters — sent after the said faux pas by Pakistan — written to Dalbir in Hindi and brought to India by his lawyer Awaiz Sheikh, Sarabjit had explained the "inhuman treatment and mockery" he was being subjected to in jail.

"I am being given something in my food and this is going on for the last two to three months. My body is getting wasted. There is pain in my left arm and the left leg is getting weaker and I cannot move," Sarabjit wrote. "When I feel pain, those on duty poke fun at me instead of giving me any medicine," he added

Claiming that the food served to prisoners in the jail was poor, Sarabjit wrote: "The food is not worth eating. Even if one eats, it cannot be digested." He added that he prefers to eat the food he cooks on given days and rest of the time, the food he eats was same as "poison".

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