ISLAMABAD : The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Interior submitted their replies in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday about the Indian nationals languishing in Pakistani jails. A bench comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard a petition filed by the Indian High Commission seeking release of those Indian prisoners who had been convicted by Pakistan’s courts and had since completed their respective jail terms. The court granted time to the counsel of the Indian High Commission for preparation of arguments on the case. “The prisoners who served their jail terms should be released from jail in accordance with law,” the chief justice remarked. Additional Attorney General Tariq Khokhar informed the court that seven out of eight prisoners in jails have been sent to India and only one is remaining. He said that one Indian prisoner has been jailed under the spying act.
“Five Indian prisoners were sent to India on October 26, two more were released after completion of their prison terms, the state counsel said. “Tell the court about remaining prisoners, who have completed their sentences awarded by the military courts,” the chief justice asked. “Under which law can you keep them in prison when their sentences have been completed?” the chief justice asked. The court told the state counsel to convince the bench over the matter on the next hearing of the case and adjourned further hearing until November 09.
The counsel of the Indian High Commission in the previous hearing had argued before the bench that Indian convicts have been in jail despite completion of their sentences. The counsel sought the court’s order to concerned institutions for release of the Indian nationals. TLTP