Pak jails 88 Indian fishermen

Last Updated 22 February 2016, 15:29 IST

A judicial magistrate today sent 88 Indian fishermen to jail here, two days after they were arrested by Pakistani authorities for allegedly fishing in the country's territorial waters.

A police official at the Karachi Docks police station said the arrested fishermen were handed over to the police and presented before a magistrate as per procedure.

"The magistrate has sent them to judicial remand in Malir jail," the official Hamid Khan said.
Hundreds of Indian fishermen are languishing in the Malir and Landhi jails in Karachi after being arrested for allegedly transgressing into Pakistani territorial waters.

An official of Pakistan's Maritime Security Agency (MSA) said the fishermen were arrested and 16 fishing boats seized early on Saturday from the Arabian Sea near the Karachi coast.

"The Indian fishermen were arrested by the MSA while they were fishing in Pakistani waters of the Arabian Sea," he said.

He dismissed Indian media reports that the Indian fishermen were taken into custody from near the Gujarat coast.

Although in December, India and Pakistan had agreed to revive the dialogue process when external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj visited Islamabad for a summit, but the same month 66 Indian fishermen were arrested by the MSA while last month another 45 were arrested.

Pakistan and India regularly arrest fishermen who venture into their waters due to a poorly-marked maritime boundary.

Some of them spend years in jail before being repatriated. In the past the two nations have released each other's fishermen as goodwill gestures.

(Published 22 February 2016, 15:29 IST)

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