Seven years after straying into Pakistan, Mumbai-based computer engineer Bhavesh Parmar on Thursday walked into India a free man.
Bhavesh was reportedly depressed after the death of his father and having quit his job with a multinational.
His mother, Hansa Parmar, was there since morning to receive her son, who had gone missing from their Mumbai home.
It was at 3.05pm that 32-year-old Bhavesh set foot on Indian soil. He was quiet and hugged his mother who was in tears. However, Bhavesh didn’t show emotions and looked depressed.
Not able to recall exactly when he crossed over to Pakistan, Bhavesh said, “I don’t know. The only thing I remember is that I was unconscious and somehow reached Pakistan on Samjhauta Express.”
Happy to be home, he said, “I had once written to my mother from jail and always wanted to meet her.” When asked how he was treated in the jail, Bhavesh said it was “fine”.
As there were reports that Bhavesh was ailing, the authorities had arranged an ambulance at the border, but he chose to walk instead.
Earlier, Hansa said, “My husband had not been keeping well and was diagnosed with cancer. To look after him, Bhavesh applied for leave from his job but as he did not get long leave, he resigned. Later, my husband died, sending Bhavesh into depression.”
She said, “One day I found Bhavesh missing and tried to trace him but to no avail. It was only in 2008 that someone in the Mumbai police informed us that Bhavesh was in Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat jail,” she added.
Mumbai MLA Krishna Hegde, who accompanied Hansa, said they had taken up the issue of getting Parmar released with the external affairs ministry seven months ago and they were happy to see him back.