KARACHI: One hundred Indian imprisoned fishermen were released by Pakistan on Sunday as a sign of goodwill leading to the partial release of 260 more Indian nationals in the current month.
These fishermen were handcuffed over the years for trespassing into Pakistani waters and breaching global nautical boundaries.
The released fishermen were taken to Karachi Cantonment Railway Station amid tight security so they could catch the Allama Iqbal Express bound for Lahore. From Lahore, they will be taken to the Wagah Border where the Indian authorities will receive them.
The Edhi Foundation gave the fishermen gifts and bear all travel expenses.
The release of Fishermen came week after the Foreign Office (FO)’s announcement of releasing 360 Indian prisoners, including 355 fishermen and five civilians during the current month.
FO spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal was quoted as saying, “the prisoners will be released in four batches, scheduled as 100 each on April 8, April 15 and April 29 while 60 prisoners, including 55 fishermen and five civilians, will be freed on April 29.”
Dr Faisal said, “the decision has been taken for 360 out of the total of 537 Indian prisoners who have completed their sentence.”
Dr Faisal further added, “Pakistan expects India will respond to the gesture by releasing 347 Pakistani prisoners, including 249 civilians and 98 fishermen, currently languishing in Indian jails.”