KARACHI: An Indian fisherman arrested more than a year ago for straying into Pakistani waters died in prison in Karachi on Tuesday after an illness, a senior jail official said.
The man, named by jail officials as Kishore Bhagwan and aged about 50, died in Landhi jail hospital, where he was being held with more than 150 other Indian fishermen.
India and Pakistan frequently arrest fishermen for violating territorial waters, though the Arabian Sea border is poorly defined and many fishing boats lack the technology needed to be certain of their precise location.
Many of them languish in jail for years even after serving their term, as poor diplomatic ties between the two arch-rivals mean fulfilling official requirements can take a long time.
“He was admitted at the jail hospital for about a month complaining of a severe cough, vomiting, and pain in the abdomen,” Sunil Shah, the chief of Landhi jail, told AFP.
“We would know the exact cause of death after the post mortem report comes up.”
The two countries periodically release batches of each other’s fishermen from their jails as goodwill gestures.
Kishore was arrested by the Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) along with other fishermen and was sent to the Landhi jail for allegedly entering Pakistan’s exclusive economic zone without legal documents, it said.
Last year, in February, Kishore managed to escape from jail when he was taken outside to do manual labour, but he was re-arrested after a 10-month search in December from PIB colony in Karachi, the reports added.