Swaraj tells envoy to ‘protect’ prisoner in PakistanArchive
NEW DELHI: Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj has directed the Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan to seek consular access to an Indian prisoner who was reportedly attacked at least thrice by inmates in a Peshawar jail, local reports said on Sunday.
They said Hamid Nehal Ansari, a Mumbai resident arrested in 2012 for illegally entering Pakistan from Afghanistan reportedly to meet a girl he had befriended online, suffered injuries after he was attacked by inmates in the Peshawar Central Prison.
“I am very much disturbed to read about repeated attacks on Hamid Ansari who is detained in Peshawar jail since 2012. It is inhuman,” Ms Swaraj tweeted.
“I have asked our High Commissioner in Pakistan to seek consular access to Hamid Ansari in hospital/jail and report,” she said in another tweet reported by Press Trust of India.
The 31-year-old man was sentenced to three years imprisonment by a military court for possessing a fake Pakistani identity card.
PTI said Mr Ansari’s lawyer Qazi Mohammad Anwar told a Peshawar High Court bench on Thursday that his client was attacked at least thrice by jail inmates in recent months.
Mr Anwar also told the court that Mr Ansari had been kept in a death cell with a hardened criminal awaiting execution for a murder.
Mr Ansari was attacked and injured three times over the last couple of months and shifted to the hospital for treatment, the counsel said. He said even the head warden would subject him to brutality and slap him on a daily basis without any reason.
Mr Ansari had gone missing after he was taken into custody by personnel of intelligence agencies and the police in Kohat in 2012 and finally in reply to a habeas corpus petition filed by his mother, Fauzia Ansari, the high court was informed on Jan 13 that he was in custody of the Pakistan Army and was being tried by a military court, PTI said.
Published in Dawn, August 8th, 2016