Pakistan’s Maritime Security Agency on Friday arrested 58 Indian fishermen after they entered into the country’s territorial waters. “Despite several warnings the Indian fishermen remained inside our territorial waters leading to their arrest and seizure of boats,” Commander Muhammad Farooq, Maritime Security Agency spokesman, said.
Nine boats belonging to the Indian fishermen were also confiscated, he said.
Last month, Pakistan, in a goodwill gesture, had released 337 Indian fishermen, including eight juveniles, from Karachi’s Malir jail. The fishermen arrested today will be produced before a magistrate tomorrow and then sent to the Malir jail.
Maritime security officials from both countries frequently arrest fishermen who enter into territorial waters in search of better catches because of the absence of a clear demarcation line between the two countries near the Sir Creek point in the Arabian Sea. Human rights bodies and the Pakistan fisher-folk forum have actively campaigned for the release of poor Indian fishermen languishing in Pakistani jails.
At present, according to the forum, there are still 97 Indian fishermen and three other Indian nationals, including a juvenile, languishing in jails in Karachi.