Released Pakistani prisoners walk across the Wagah border in eastern Pakistan's Lahore on May 30, 2014. India has released 37 Pakistani prisoners as goodwill gesture by the new government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, said local media Friday. (Xinhua/Sajjad)
ISLAMABAD, May 30 (Xinhua) -- India on Friday released 37 Pakistani prisoners and handed them over to Pakistani authorities at the Wagah border crossing between the two countries, officials said.
All the released prisoners, including 32 fishermen, spent nearly 16 months in different jails across India.
Pakistani Foreign Office spokesperson Tasnim Aslam told media that 484 Pakistani prisoners, including 136 fishermen, are still in Indian jails.
"Out of these, 25 prisoners have already completed their sentence and are awaiting repatriation," said Aslam.
Earlier on May 26, Pakistan handed over 151 Indian prisoners including 150 fishermen along with their 57 fishing boats to Indian authorities as a good will gesture ahead of his visit to New Delhi.
Pakistan's step to release prisoners was welcomed by India as a diplomatic gesture and now New Delhi responded it by handing over the Pakistani prisoners at the Wagah border crossing.
Fishermen from both sides are usually accused of violating territorial waters of each other.
"The issue of prisoners in our respective countries is a humanitarian one and should be taken in that spirit and it is our hope that the Government of India would release all Pakistani prisoners who have completed their sentences," said the spokesperson.