The repatriation of 100 Indian fishermen whose release was ordered by Pakistan Premier Yousuf Raza Gilani, will get underway once “necessary formalities” are completed, the Indian High Commission said on Wednesday
The release of the fishermen was described by Mr. Gilani’s office on Tuesday as a humanitarian gesture. However, it had run into a hitch due to logistical issues.
The High Commission said in a statement that it received “the formal communication in this regard from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan late evening on December 22“.
However, the list of fishermen to be released was provided by foreign ministry only at 12.30 p.m. on Wednesday, the statement said.
“Arrangements to receive the fishermen, together with completion of necessary formalities are underway and will be completed expeditiously,” it said.
Diplomatic sources earlier told PTI that the verification of the identity of the fishermen and preparation of their travel documents could be done only after receiving the complete list from Pakistani authorities.
The Indian High Commission welcomed Mr. Gilani’s decision to release the fishermen and expressed the hope that “the remaining Indian fishermen in custody in Pakistan will also be released at the earliest”.