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Gujarat: 1st batch of Indian fishermen released from Pak arrives

Gujarat: 1st batch of Indian fishermen released from Pak arrives

Vadodara: The first batch of 110 fishermen released recently by Pakistan, arrived here from Amritsar. They will soon leave for their native places to be reunited with their families, an official said on Thursday.

Pakistan had on December 25 released 220 Indian fishermen, a goodwill gesture which came amid strained bilateral ties after the recent cross-border terror incidents.

Due to non-availability of required number of coaches in the train from Amritsar, the fishermen, mostly from Gujarat, were divided into two batches. The first batch boarded the train on Tuesday and arrived here late Wednesday night, said Gujarat Fisheries Department Superintendent Ashok Patel. The other batch of 110 fishermen will reach Vadodara on Thursday night, he said.

Several fishermen broke into tears after arriving here while some of them expressed concern about how to resume fishing, as they said that their boats were still in possession of the Pakistani authorities, an official said.

The released fishermen belong to Una, Kodinar Junagadh, Jamnagar, Valsad and Navsari in Gujarat. They also come from Diu and also Uttar Pradesh, from where they come to the western state to earn their livelihood.

They will now head to their native places to be with their families.

The Gujarat Fishermen Association thanked Pakistan based NGO, Edhi Foundation, for making arrangements to bring the fishermen to Lahore from Karachi by a special train.

PTI