Pakistan has released Bhanudas Karale of Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra along with four other Indians, who are now in Amritsar, waiting for their relatives to come and pick them up.
Bhanudas, 58, was arrested on August 28, 2010, for illegally entering Pakistan, and was granted bail on September 21 that year. Since then, he has been waiting to get out of the Kot Lakhpat jail in Lahore.
On November 2, 2011, the Lahore High Court ordered the immediate release of Bhanudas and 74 other foreign prisoners, including 32 Indians, who had finished their sentence. Since then, 10 prisoners have been released, human rights activists say.
It has been a difficult ordeal for the family since he went missing.
“We searched for him everywhere. We lodged a complaint with the Wanowrie police station in Pune. We made a list of all villages named Wadgaon in Maharashtra and went there looking for him, in case he had gone there by mistake,” The News quoted Bhanudas'' nephew Nitin Karale, as saying.
Bhanudas lost his mental balance after Garware Nylons Ltd., where he worked, shut down in 1996, and it was after a visit to a psychiatrist that he disappeared, on January 3, 2010.
“It has been a long journey for Karale. I spoke to him little while ago and he is fine. Thanks to everyone who made this possible,” said Indian peace activist Jatin Desai.