KARACHI - Pakistan on Monday released 48 Indian fishermen, 10 of them teenagers, as a goodwill gesture following a visit by the Indian Foreign Minister SM Krishna.
Pakistan government had directed concerned authorities to release Indian fishermen kept in custody for violating the territorial boundaries in open sea.
Inspector General of (IG) Prisons Mahmood Siddiqui, representatives of Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum (PFF) and Legal Aid organization were also present on the occasion.
Sami Memon, spokesman of Pakistan Fisher Folk Forum, said chairman Legal Aid Organization Nasir Aslam Zahid had arranged two buses to take them to Wahga Border.
He said released prisoners would reach Wahga Border on Tuesday morning wherefrom Indian authorities would receive them.
Sami said he was expecting that rest of the detained prisoners would be released in near future.
and India would also show the same spirit and would release more than 150 detained Pakistani fishermen.
IG Prisons Mahmood Siddiqui told newsmen on the occasion that majority of the fishermen had been released and they had only 32 Indian prisoners in Malir Jail.
He said rest of the detained prisoners will be released as both countries have shown willingness to narrow the differences. He said 32 Indian fishermen were still in Pakistani prisons.
They would also be released after our authorities receive a clearance from the Indian government. He said 10 out of 48 released inmates were teenage boys.
The Indians were having the flowers buckets and gifts before the board in the buses. They were smiling on the occasion and also thanked Pakistan Government for their released.
Agencies add: “We have released 48 Indian fishermen from Malir Jail in Karachi as a goodwill gesture,” deputy inspector-general prisons of southern Sindh province, Nusrat Mangan, told AFP.
Nazeer Husain Shah, superintendent of the jail, said the released prisoners included 10 teenage boys.
The Indians were presented with flowers and gifts, then bussed to Lahore, from where they would cross the Wagah border.
“We expect our neighbours will show the similar spirit and release the Pakistani prisoners from their jails,” Sindh Law Minister Ayaz Soomro said.