Srinagar: The Indian government has released a Pakistani national imprisoned in Indian jails for 23 years, reports said.
“Opting for backdoor diplomacy, the repatriation was performed as a goodwill gesture to the (Pakistan) government,” the Express Tribune reported.
It said Syed Sajid Ali Bukhari, a resident of Kotli in Pakistan-administered Kashmir had “mistakenly crossed the border” and entered into Indian Kashmir.
On 8 September 1995, the Indian forces apprehended him in Kashmir and imprisoned him. “Bukhari stayed in Srinagar jail for many years. His case, under RPC section 302, 307 and section 3, 5, was registered at Prempura police station,” the report said.
Bukhari’s citizenship was confirmed in July 2006 after which the process of repatriation was initiated. He was handed over to Pakistan’s Punjab Rangers by the Indian Border Security Force (BSF).
Pakistani High Commission in New Delhi also played a crucial role in Bukhari’s release.
Numerous Pakistani and Indian citizens due to non-verification of citizenship are forced to spend their days behind bars in both the countries.
Last week, a 22-year-old patient of sickle cell anemia, who had traversed into Pakistan’s territory unintentionally five years ago, was handed back to India as a goodwill gesture.