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Pak driver returns home, 10 months after arrest here

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Attari (Punjab): A Pakistani truck driver has returned to his country, 10 months after he came here to deliver some material and was arrested when a porter was crushed to death under his vehicle.

30-year-old Ali Mohammad could go home as he was released after the deceased’s family withdrew the case against him, officials at the Attari border said.

However, it took six months for the processes to be completed for him to cross over to Pakistan on the basis of ‘Emergency Travel Certificate’ granted by the government of India.

Mohammad had crossed over to India on April 27, last year with his truck laden with gypsum. During the process to unload gypsum, the truck moved a few yards backwards, crushing Indian porter Rashpal Singh to death, officials said.

After the incident, Indian porters staged a protest at the Attari border and Mohammad was arrested on the spot and sent to judicial custody.

Pakistani High Commission in Delhi was informed about it and a lawyer was engaged who procured bail for him with the condition that he wouldn’t cross over to Pakistan till the case was disposed.

A few months later, a compromise was struck between the driver and the deceased porter’s family who understood that it was an accidental death and the driver’s intention was not malafide.

Subsequently, a fresh plea was filed in the local court for the cancellation of FIR. The request was accepted by Chief Judicial Magistrate Yukti Goel and the case was quashed in August last year, the officials said.

When Ali reached Attari border to cross over to Pakistan immediately thereafter, he was not allowed by the Indian Immigration Authorities as his EMC was required to be stamped by the Ministries of Home Affairs and External Affairs.

When the Ministries concerned were asked, they demanded NOC from Secretary Home Punjab government along with local police report.

All these processes took six months from the date the CJM issued the release order.

After completing all the formalities, Ali managed to cross over to Pakistan two days back on February 17 with case property (truck involved in the accident), officials said.

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