VADODARA: The family of an Indian fisherman, who is apparently suffering from ill-health in a Pakistani jail, has appealed to authorities of the neighbouring country to release him at the earliest on humanitarian grounds. The fisherman, Bhagvan Sarman Solanki, from Tad village of Una taluka in Gujarat's Gir Somnath district, was caught after his boat entered Pakistani territorial waters in April 2015. Since then he has been languishing in a jail in the neighbouring country.
According to Solanki's 18-year-old son Sanjay, some of the fishermen from neighbouring villages, released from Pakistan in March this year, informed his family that his father was apparently in coma for last four months.
"Why my father's name is not included in the list of 18 fishermen released from jail in Pakistan yesterday?" Sanjay asked while talking to PTI over phone.
Notably, in a goodwill gesture, Pakistan had yesterday released 18 Indian fishermen who were held for violating the territorial waters of the country, according to a media report.
The fishermen freed from Malir jail in Karachi would travel to Lahore by train and be handed over to India at Wagah border, The Express Tribune reported. Sanjay said their family, comprising his mother and four children, is worried as they have not received any letter from Solanki for the past four months.
He said even authorities from Pakistan have not bothered to communicate to them about Solanki's ill-health. Sanjay appealed to Pakistani authorities to release his father at the earliest on humanitarian grounds.
Rajya Sabha MP Parimal Nathwani also said he has requested the Indian government to take up the matter with Pakistan.
Meanwhile, Gujarat Fishermen Association's senior vice president Veljibhai Masani alleged that the Pakistani authorities were deliberately not sending back Solanki to Gujarat as it will prove that he was medically ill-treated in jail, and expose them.