The Border Security Force (BSF) is planning to put on display the pistol used by the freedom fighter Bhagat Singh to kill British officer John Saunders in 1928, at its new arms museum here. At present, the historic semi-automatic .32-bore Colt-make pistol is on display at the old museum of the city-based Central School of Weapon Central School of Weapons and Tactics (CSWT).
“The pistol used by Bhagat Singh to kill the British police officer John Saunders is currently on display at CSWT’s old museum. We are planning to display this pistol with special importance at new arms museum, construction of which would be completed within a couple of months,” the Border Security Force Inspector General, Pankaj Goomar told PTI. He said that besides the firearm, the life saga of the “Shaheed-e-Azam” would also be on the display.
The pistol was brought to the CSWT on October 7, 1969, along with seven other firearms from the Police Academy based at Phillaur in Punjab. The firearm could have been sent from Lahore to the Police Academy during the British rule, the IG said.
“A research team studying the legacy of Bhagat Singh has informed about this pistol. An examination of the historic documents has proved that this was the same pistol which was recovered from the possession of Bhagat Singh. It was established by the documents that this pistol was used for killing British police officer John Saunders,” the officer said.
Saunders was fatally shot on December 17, 1928 in Lahore, in what was described as the Lahore Conspiracy Case. Bhagat Singh along with fellow freedom fighters Rajguru and Sukhdev were hanged to death on March 23, 1931 in the Lahore Central Jail.