Lahore: Britain's Queen Elizabeth must apologise for executing legendary freedom fighter Bhagat Singh in 1931 and pay blood money to his heirs, human rights activists in Pakistan said on Thursday as they marked his 85th death anniversary.
Events to mark Bhagat Singh's death anniversary was held on Wednesday in two different places in Pakistan's Punjab province. The first ceremony was held at the birth place of Bhagat Singh -- Chak 105-GB, Banga Chak, Jaranwala, Faisalabad district -- some 100 kilometres from here. People from different walks of life attended the ceremony and paid rich tributes to him for his struggle for freedom.
The second function was held at Shadman Chowk where Bhagat was hanged along with his companions Raj Guru and Sukhdev on March 23, 1931 after being tried under charges of hatching a conspiracy against the regime.
A resolution has also been adopted unanimously demanding the British Queen (Queen Elizabeth II) tender an apology for executing the freedom movement hero as well as paying blood money to his heirs.
Bhagat Singh was initially jailed for life but later awarded death sentence in another "fabricated case", they said.
A written message of Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale was also read out during the occasion. Bambawale lauded efforts of the Bhagat Singh Foundation for organising the event to keep his memories alive.
"We will submit this resolution to the British High Commission in Islamabad to be forwarded to the Queen," rights activist Abdullah Malik said. "We will agitate with the British government to tender apology for executing Bhagat Singh," he said.
Shadman's event was held under strict security in the face of threats from extremists. Since the Bhagat Singh Foundation has been demanding renaming the Shadman Chowk as 'Bhagat Singh Chowk' the Hurmat-e-Rasool, a sister organisation of Jamaat-u-Dawah, opposing it and suggesting to rename it as 'Hurmat Chowk'.
Iqbal Virk, owner of the Bhagat Singh Haveli, said Singh's struggle is getting popular among the youth here as they often ask him about the background of Singh and his companions. "The government must organise events in the honour of Bhagat Singh on the eve of Pakistan Day (March 23) as he and his fellows had paved the way for freedom," he demanded. The government had recently preserved two rooms of the Bhagat Singh's haveli. The pictures of Bhagat and his fellows have been displayed in the rooms....