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Advani to take up issue of Pakistani prisoners in India

Rezaul H Laskar in Islamabad | October 28, 2008 20:21 IST

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Leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha Lal Kishenchand Advani [Images] on Tuesday assured leading Pakistani rights activist Ansar Burney that he would raise with the Indian government the issue of Pakistani nationals being held in prison even after completing their jail terms.

Burney and his son Fahad, currently in India on a private visit, called on Advani, leader of the ppposition in the Lok Sabha, at the latter's residence in New Delhi [Images] to wish him on the occasion of Diwali and to discuss bilateral relations.

"I informed Advani about the cases of Pakistani nationals who were in prison even after completing their jail terms. In the cases of some individuals, they had completed their prison terms 10 or 20 years ago," Burney told PTI on phone from New Delhi.

Advani sought details about such prisoners and said he would take up their issue with the Indian government, Burney said. There are some 50 Pakistani prisoners who have completed their sentences in Amritsar [Images] jail alone, he added.

Burney, a former human rights minister, said Advani also spoke fondly about growing up in the Pakistani port city of Karachi before Partition.

Burney said he and Advani had also discussed human rights issues, bilateral ties and steps to usher in peace between the two countries.

The rights activist also welcomed news about the shifting of Indian death row prisoner Sarabjit Singh to a cell for political prisoners in Lahore's [Images] Kot Lakhpat jail.

"I thank President Asif Ali Zardari and the government for taking such steps as it will only help to foster better relations and love between the two countries," he said.




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