Pakistan arrests 45 Indian fishermen

Pakistan arrests 45 Indian fishermen

At least 45 Indian fishermen have been arrested by Pakistani authorities for allegedly violating territorial waters in the Arabian Sea, police said today.

Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (MSA) arrested the fishermen yesterday near the Sir Creek area in the Arabian Sea close to Karachi's coastal area and seized their boats.

"We have seized eight boats from them as well and we arrested them after warning them several times to leave the Pakistani territorial waters," a spokesman for the MSA said. They were allegedly arrested in Pakistan waters inside the unmarked sea boundary.

The MSA handed over the fishermen to police, who have registered a case.The fishermen were today produced before a magistrate who sent them to judicial custody to Malir jail under the supervision of the Docks police.

Pakistan and India regularly arrest the rival fishermen in the disputed waters as the maritime border in the Arabian Sea is poorly defined.

The arrested men usually languish in jails for months and are often released at so-called important occasions like bilateral visits of top leaders. Pakistan set free 151 Indian fishermen when its Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited New Delhi last year to attend the oath-taking ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. At least 38 Indian fishermen were arrested on January 21 and seven of their boats were seized from the open sea in the unmarked territorial water in the Arabian Sea. Nearly 349 Indian fishermen are already imprisoned in Karachi.

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