Even before India and Pakistan can get down to more serious business later this month, they might have to resolve the curious case of 189 “missing” Pakistani prisoners in India.
India and Pakistan on Friday exchanged, through diplomatic channels simultaneously in New Delhi and Islamabad, the lists of nationals (including civil prisoners and fishermen) of each country lodged in the jails of the other country consistent with the provisions of the Agreement on Consular Access between India and Pakistan, MEA said in a statement.
The agreement, which was signed on 31 May 2008, provides that a comprehensive list of nationals of each country lodged in other country’s jails has to be exchanged twice each year, on January 1 and July 1.
However, when both the countries exchanged the ‘customary’ lists on Friday, Pakistan alleged of discrepancy from the Indian side. While Indian list showed that there were 271 Pakistani prisoners, including 17 fishermen, in India, the Pakistani list stated that there were 460 prisoners from their country in Indian jails. In addition to this, the Pakistani list claims that 113 of these are fishermen.