Jadhav shadow on repatriation of 2 Pak kids lodged in Hoshiarpur
The chill in India-Pakistan relations following death sentence to former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav by a Pakistan military court recently may delay the repatriation of two children lodged in an observation home meant for undertrial adolescent offenders here.punjab Updated: Apr 18, 2017 19:17 IST
The chill in India-Pakistan relations following death sentence to former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav by a Pakistan military court recently may delay the repatriation of two children lodged in an observation home meant for undertrial adolescent offenders here.
Babar Ali, 16, and a speech-and-hearing-impaired boy are waiting for their repatriation since long. Babar Ali and his younger sibling Ali Raza, 14, had inadvertently strayed into the Indian territory from Ramdas sector in Amritsar in July last year. The latter is confined to Faridkot juvenile home that houses offenders aged 5 to 15.
Babar Ali has served his sentence of 45 days as awarded by the juvenile justice board, Amritsar, on August 31, 2016, under the Indian Passport Act, but he continues to languish at the observation home. His parents are worried that Jadhav issue may jeopardise the repatriation process.
“When the boy talked to his parents over phone, the latter expressed apprehension that soured diplomatic ties between the two countries might come in between, but that is not the case. Legal matters in such cases often get stretched,” said observation home superintendent Naresh Kumar.
“The Juvenile Justice Act mandates settlement of every juvenile offence case within six months, but it does not always happen,” he said.
He said the matter was with the Indian embassy in Pakistan and it was for the Amritsar police to pursue the matter. Senior superintendent of police, Amritsar rural, J Elanchezhian, said they were doing the needful.
The deaf and mute Pakistan national, who had crossed over from the Dera Baba Nanak sector in Gurdaspur in 2014, would also be completing three years — the maximum confinement for a juvenile delinquent — in November, but the authorities have not been able to identify his antecedents as yet.
“His physical condition has been a big impediment in the trial. He will be released from the local facility in November. It is for the government to make efforts for identification and repatriation of the boy,” the SSP said.
Last year, Union minister Vijay Sampla’s Jalandhar-based nephew had taken up the matter of the boy with the external affairs ministry but the initiative did not bear any fruit.