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‘Meri madam mahaan’: Freed Indian Hamid Ansari, his mother meet Sushma Swaraj

Hamid Ansari had entered Pakistan on November 12, 2012, to meet a woman whom he had befriended on social media. The 33-year-old was arrested in November 2012 and handed a three-year sentence in 2015 for possessing a fake Pakistani identity card.

india Updated: Dec 19, 2018 22:38 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Hamid Ansari, who was released by Pakistan on Tuesday, met external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on December 19.
Hamid Ansari, who was released by Pakistan on Tuesday, met external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj on December 19.(ANI Photo/ Twitter)
         

An emotional Hamid Ansari and his mother met external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi on Wednesday, a day after he was released from a Pakistan jail, and thanked her for securing his release.

The Mumbai resident crossed over to the Indian side at Punjab’s Attari-Wagah border on Tuesday after spending six years in Peshawar’s central jail on charges of espionage.

“Mera Bharat mahaan, meri madam mahaan, sab madam ne hi kiya hai (My India is great, my madam is great. You did everything),” Ansari’s mother Fauzia was heard telling the minister in a video of the meeting released by news agency ANI.

Swaraj hugged Fauzia as she comforted the sobbing mother and told Ansari he had faced a difficult time.

Ansari had entered Pakistan on November 12, 2012, to meet a woman whom he had befriended on social media. The 33-year-old was arrested in November 2012 and handed a three-year sentence in 2015 for possessing a fake Pakistani identity card.

Ansari had been lodged in Peshawar’s central jail after being sentenced by the military court. His jail term ended on December 15 and he was repatriated after the Peshawar high court gave the Pakistani government a month’s deadline to complete the process on Thursday.

“I feel really good coming back home. I am very emotional right now,” Ansari said earlier after reaching the national capital, according to ANI.

His mother Fauzia, father Nehal and brother met him at the border as he crossed over into India.

“For us, it is like Hamid has taken a new birth. We did not celebrate any festival since my son went missing, but this is the day of celebration,” his father said before receiving his son.

First Published: Dec 19, 2018 12:55 IST