Pakistan authorities released 163 Indian fishermen from Landhi jail on Sunday, showing a goodwill gesture following the meeting of the premiers of both countries in Russia last month.
The released fishermen were sent to Lahore through Allama Iqbal Train from Karachi Cantonment Railway Station, from where they will be handed over to Indian authorities.
Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum (PFF) and Edhi Foundation officials, including Faisal Edhi, were present during the release of the fishermen. PFF general secretary Saeed Baloch said that there are still 193 Indian fishermen in Pakistani jails. He hoped that they will get to go home soon too after the beginning of this new relationship between the two countries.
Baloch said that 99 Pakistani fishermen, with around 215 fishing boats are in India. He added that both the governments should show kindness and release all the fishermen with a similar spirit to strengthen bilateral ties and help each other.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 3rd, 2015.