Pak prisoner is attacked in Jammu jail, seriously injured

FPPakistani prisoner Sanaullah being taken to a Jammu hospital Friday

A day after Indian prisoner Sarabjit Singh died of his injuries after being assaulted in a Lahore jail, a Pakistani prisoner in Jammu's Kot Bhalwal jail was seriously injured Friday following an attack with bricks and a shovel by another inmate.

The 52-year-old Pakistani, Sanaullah Ranjay, was flown to PGI Chandigarh for treatment within hours of the attack. Doctors said his condition was critical as he had suffered serious head injuries and also had multiple fractures. Although the motive behind the assault was not clear, it is being seen as a response to Sarabjit's death.

New Delhi expressed its regret at the incident while Islamabad demanded that Sanaullah be sent back to Pakistan for treatment just as India had asked for Sarabjit's return.

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said the attack was "extremely distressing" and rubbished the talk about retaliation and conspiracy. "Injuries caused to a person in incarceration is unacceptable and sad. Therefore we are cooperating with Pakistan," Khurshid told reporters accompanying him on a three-day visit to Iran. "The talks of retaliation, conspiracy, intent to kill can continue indefinitely if we continue on this path."

Expressing his deep concern, Pakistan's caretaker Prime Minister Justice (retd) Mir Hazar Khan Khoso urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to look into "this grave issue personally" and ensure that a thorough investigation is conducted into the incident and the perpetrators brought to justice.

"To the family of Sanaullah, I assure that the Government of Pakistan is seeking the best medical treatment for him. We have asked the Indian authorities to accord consular access to our high commission in New Delhi to visit Sanaullah. We have also called for his evacuation to Pakistan on medical and humanitarian grounds," he said in a statement.

"It is our expectation that the Indian government would ensure the safety of all Pakistani prisoners in Indian jails and also facilitate expeditious release of all those Pakistani prisoners who have completed their jail terms," Khoso said.

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