Over 20 Pakistanis who are serving life sentences in Sri Lankan prisons over narcotics offences are likely to be extradited back to Pakistan soon. The prisoners will continue serving their life sentences in Pakistani prisons.
An agreement for their transfer was signed between Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
In addition to these prisoners, there are approximately 50 other Pakistanis in remand for similar charges. Presently, Pakistani and Sri Lankan authorities are working on the modalities of transport for the prisoners.
According to official sources in Colombo, the prisoners would have been transferred much earlier, but the procedure was delayed by the interior ministry in Islamabad.
Sources said that there was a Pakistani who smuggled about seven grams of heroin for personal consumption during his trip to Sri Lanka to attend the ICC Cricket World Cup last year. The person was reported to be an addict; therefore, his case was considered on humanitarian grounds.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 5th, 2012.