Sentence over but UP man stuck in Pak jail: Family

JailIt was only when an official of the local intelligence unit visited the family in May that they got to know of his arrest.

Armed with information collected under the RTI Act, the family of 35-year-old Dinesh Vishkarma, who is lodged in a jail in Pakistan, has requested top authorities in India to get him home. According to the family, Dinesh's one-year jail term ended on March 9 and he is now being detained illegally.

Dinesh, a native of UP's Ghazipur district, is lodged in the District Jail Malir in Karachi. He was arrested by Pakistani authorities for entering the country without legal documents.

It was only when an official of the local intelligence unit visited the family in May that they got to know of his arrest. The family met district officials and political leaders to get more information, but in vain. "At that time, all we knew was that he was lodged in a jail in Pakistan. We even didn't know which jail and on what charges," Dinesh's younger brother Rajneesh said.

Advocate Awanish Chaubey, who lives in the vicinity, then filed an RTI application with the External Affairs Ministry.

Last month, he received a reply, stating that Dinesh was arrested on March 9, 2012 by Pakistani authorities, convicted under the Foreigners' Act and sentenced to one year's rigorous imprisonment. The court also imposed a fine of Rs 500 or 15 days imprisonment.

"It was also mentioned that his nationality had been confirmed. We have no information why the Pakistan government is not releasing Dinesh when his jail term has been completed. Last week, I wrote to the President and the Prime Minister of India, the External Affairs Ministry and the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, requesting them to help since my brother's detention is now illegal", Rajneesh said.

Dinesh's wife, Rukhmani Devi, said her main concern was her husband's health and safety. "We will be satisfied only after he returns home," she said.

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