Indo-Pak talks: MHA set ball rolling before Modi

Indo-Pak talks: MHA set ball rolling before Modi

Indo-Pak talks: MHA set ball rolling before Modi

Goodwill gestures to restart bilateral engagements and cooperation between India and Pakistan was put in motion much before the Narendra Modi government was sworn in.

In what seems to have been an attempt by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to set the ball rolling on Indo-Pak talks, a series of letters were dispatched to the home departments of the various coastal states bordering Pakistani waters.

As per the communications between the MHA and the Karnataka home department, two letters were dispatched by the under secretary to the government of India Vikas Srivastava (Foreigners) to the additional chief secretary, home department, on May 12, four days prior to the announcement of the poll results.

One letter was received by the state home department on May 16, the day results were announced.The second letter stating “Most Immediate” was received by the home department on May 23, three days prior to the swearing-in ceremony.

The subject matter read: “Comprehensive List of Pakistani Prisoners /Fishermen to be Exchanged With govt of Pakistan on 1-01 and 01/ 07/year.” Sources in the home department said appropriate action was being taken in this regard.

Meanwhile, the prisons section of the Karnataka Police said there are no Pakistanis in state prisons. Till about four months ago, two Pakistani nationals were lodged in Belgaum jail but were transferred to Kerala on cases pertaining to that state.

Nonetheless, in order to eliminate the possibility of unrecognised Pakistani nationals being held in Karnataka jails, the ADGP (Prisons) has dispatched a letter to the home department asking them to allow Pakistan to have consular access to the central jails.