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Pakistan releases 26 Indian fishermen as goodwill gesture

Pakistan released 26 Indian fishermen from Karachi’s Malir jail on Sunday as a goodwill gesture, reports said. They had been arrested for allegedly trespassing into Pakistan’s territorial waters. They would be taken to Lahore and sent to India through the Wagah border, The Nation said. The jail authorities gave them gifts and cash prizes, it said.

The Indian prisoners said that upon reaching India, they will request the Indian authorities to release Pakistani prisoners in reciprocation.

Pakistan and India frequently arrest fishermen as there is no clear demarcation of the maritime border in the Arabian Sea and these fishermen do not have boats equipped with the technology to know their precise location.

Owing to lengthy and slow bureaucratic and legal procedures, the fishermen usually remain in jail for several months.

A number of non-governmental organisations in both India and Pakistan have raised the issue, pressing their governments to release the arrested fishermen without delay.

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