A 16-year-old Pakistani prisoner was released on Monday after spending time in India for 14 months. Ashfaq Ali after being released said that he does not want to go back to Pakistan but stay in India instead.
A 16-year-old Pakistani prisoner was released on Monday after spending time in India for 14 months. Ashfaq Ali after being released said that he does not want to go back to Pakistan but stay in India instead. He says that India is good and he can get a job in the country. “I crossed the border by mistake when I was caught. I was here for 14 months. I don’t want to go back. India is good. I can get a job. I wish Indian govt would let me stay,” he said after being released at the Attari-Wagah border.
On June 19, the Indian government had sent back six Pakistani prisoners, including a woman and a child back to Pakistan via the Attari-Wagah border. “In addition, four Pakistan prisoners have already been released and repatriated in 2018, so far,” read a statement from the Ministry of External Affairs.
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“India attaches high priority to addressing all humanitarian issues, including early release and repatriation of Indian fishermen and prisoners in Pakistan’s custody. The release of 147 Indian prisoners, including 146 fishermen, has been secured in 2018, so far,” the statement further read.
During the reparation process in June, was a prisoner named Akhtar-ul-Islam. After his release, he said: “I am from Lahore. I crossed the border and came to India by mistake. The session court and High Court have set me free from all charges. It feels good that I am going back to my nation. Currently, it’s my 12th year in India. I was 20 when I was caught.”
“I want to request the governments in India and Pakistan that please don’t do politics when it comes to the life of prisoners because their lives are wasted due to long pending cases,” the prisoner added.
In October last year, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had suggested that the two sides could progress on humanitarian issues related to elderly, women, children and mentally unsound prisoners. Following that, in March this year, India and Pakistan had agreed to release and repatriate women prisoners and those above 60 and below 18 years of age.