NEW DELHI: Pakistan on Monday released two Indian High Commission staffers from detention hours after India summoned their charge d’affaires in New Delhi and lodged a strong protest.
Earlier in the day, the two staffers posted in Islamabad were reported missing after leaving the mission’s premises. The two drivers were from the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and were on deputation.
According to sources, the duo left the High Commission premises in the morning to pick up an embassy official, but did not reach their destination.
Sources pointed fingers at Pakistan’s intelligence agency, the ISI. Local media quoted Pakistani officials as saying that the duo was arrested for their alleged involvement in a hit-and-run case, which left a person injured in Islamabad.
Earlier in the day, Pakistan’s Charge d’affaires in New Delhi Syed Haider Shah was summoned by the ministry of external affairs and told that the two officials must be released immediately without interrogation or harassment.
Their safety and security, it was underlined, was Islamabad’s responsibility.
The two Indian officials went missing close on the heels of a video that surfaced showing Indian Charge d’affaires Gaurav Ahluwalia being chased by security personnel on bikes.
A few days ago, India arrested two Pakistan High Commission officials on charges of espionage and ordered them to leave the country within 24 hours. Monday’s incident is being seen as a tit-for-tat by Pakistan.