Goodwill gesture: India releases 39 Pak nationals

Those released include 18 fishermen and a Pakistani Hindu family of nine.

punjab Updated: Mar 01, 2017 20:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Attari border,Integrated Check Post,India
Those returning to Pakistan included a Hindu family of nine from Sindh, who were held by BSF in 2015. (Gurpreet Singh/HT Photo)

In a goodwill gesture, India on Wednesday released 39 Pakistani nationals and handed them over to the Pakistani Rangers at the International Border in Attari. Those released include 18 fishermen and a Pakistani Hindu family of nine.

The Pakistani nationals were brought to the Attari border from different jails across the nation and freed after proper documentation and verification at the Integrated Check Post. They crossed over to Pakistan around 2.45pm via road.

Relieved to be returning home, Sikander, a fisherman, said: “Fishing is our livelihood, and it was during our search for fish in the sea when Indian coastal guards nabbed us. We are happy to return, but also dejected over having spent over a year in jail.”

Heera Lal, A Pakistani Hindu hailing from Sindh province, who was arrested along with wife and seven children by the Border Security Force in 2015, also returned home with his family after completing the sentence.

“I had fled my village after some dispute with locals. I came towards the Indian border and was arrested. Today I am happy that I am going back,” he said.

First Published: Mar 01, 2017 19:42 IST