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India sends 13-year-old back to Pak

A Pakistani teenager, who crossed over to India to meet a Bollywood star, was given a warm send-off on Tuesday by the district administration. Kashif Ali, 14, was taken to Wagah border under the supervision of the district and sessions judge cum chairman of Juvenile Board, officials said here.

punjab Updated: Oct 09, 2012 18:27 IST
Aseem Bassi
Aseem Bassi
Hindustan Times

In a goodwill gesture, India on Tuesday sent home a 13-year-old Pakistani boy Kashif Ali, who crossed over to India after getting annoyed with his family that had started sending him to a 'Madrassa' a year ago.

It is learnt that Kashif had ran from his house to meet Bollywood star Ajay Devgun, but on Tuesday Kashif made clear that he never wanted to go to a Madrassa (a religious school) and that was the only reason he ran away from home.

After spending a year in juvenile home in Faridkot, smiles surrounded the Attari Border as soon as Kashif stepped out of a bus to cross the zero line and enter his country.

Pakistani theatre personality Madiha Gohar, who had played a key role in locating the family of the boy in Pakistan came to India to receive the boy.

The 13-year-old Ali said, "I had crossed over to India by mistake and I am happy that I am going home.

He denied that he was here to meet any Bollywood actor, but certainly mentioned that his family had enrolled him in a madrassa and he never liked that.

"I never wanted to go to a madrassa," he added.

Kashif said that he has not faced any problem in India, but wanted to go home.

The eyes of Ali lit up when theatre personality Madiha Gohar mentioned that soon she would be writing a play on the story of Kashif Ali and the boy would be part of it.

Terming this a great gesture on part of India, Madiha Gohar said, "I had come to India sometime back and our theatre group was performing in Faridkot when district and sessions judge Archana Puri informed of the presence of a Pakistani boy. For the welfare of the boy, Archana Puri gave photographs and video footage of Kashif. When I went back to Pakistan and got the pictures published in newspapers it was found that Kashif belonged to Dipalpur village in Okara district."

Thereafter, proceedings moved in India and finally Kashif would be going home, she added.

Coming all the way to border to see off Kashif, district and sessions judge of Faridkot, Archana Puri, said, "It really feels good that Kashif is returning to his nation now. We expedited his release once his case was decided."

Archana Puri also gave a set of books to the boy.

On a question, Madiha Gohar mentioned that, "Definitely, Kashif never wanted to be in Madrassa and that is the reason he ran away. We have told his mother not to send him to Madrassa again."

She said that as far as acting was concerned, he was fond of it and we would make him participate in a play and try bringing him to India on visa.

Kashif was nabbed by BSF last year when he illegally crossed over to India from Ferozepur.

First Published: Oct 09, 2012 13:44 IST