A day after 29-year-old Manmeet Alisher was burnt alive in Brisbane, his elder brother Amit Alisher, who is also the general secretary of Youth Akali Dal in Malwa zone-2, flew to Australia on Saturday to collect the body and also to find out the reason behind this crime.
“I am not able to believe this news. I have not even told my parents about it till now. I have told my relatives not to show any newspapers to them. Even the TV is switched off at home. Until the time the body arrives, it will be hard for them to accept this huge loss,” an inconsolable Amit told The Indian Express.
The brothers come from Alisher village in Sangrur district. Manmeet was a permanent resident of Australia and worked as a bus driver in Brisbane. He was also a singer and often participated in weekend singing programmes in Down Under.
“Life was smooth. He was well settled and happy. I wonder why this happened to him,” Amit said.
Manmeet’s father Ram Sarup is a retired government school teacher. Amit runs an IELTS centre at Lehragaga. “He (Manmeet) was doing well in Australia and had come to India two years back. He was to get married in February next year,” the elder brother said, adding that Manmeet was to come back home next month and was to stay till his wedding.
Manmeet was also an AAP volunteer, according to the party’s overseas in-charge Kumar Vishwas and its organizational head Durgesh Pathak, who expressed shock over his killing. In a statement, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal condemned Manmeet’s killing and called the attack an “inhuman, brutal and extremely worrying”.
Sushma assures action
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday said India will take up at the highest level of Australian government the immolation of an Indian-origin bus driver in Brisbane. “We will take this up at the highest level in the Australian Government. Our heartfelt condolences. @officeofssbadal @HarsimratBadal_,” Swaraj tweeted.