India-Pak Working on Prisoner Swap: Release of the 70 above, mentally-physically ill and female prisoners under process

The National Security Advisers (NSAs) of India and Pakistan have reportedly agreed to swap prisoners on the basis of categorisation agreed between the officials. The Categories are those above 70 years of age, with mental disability and hearing or speech impairment and female prisoners. This comes in consequence the meeting between Ajit Doval, NSA (India) and his Pakistani counterpart Lt General Nasir Khan Janjua (retd) on 26th December last year at Bangkok that was termed as “talk on terrorism” by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson as the same was held after breakdown in the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue (CBD), launched in December 2015.

The high officials have agreed on a swap between the prisoners filling the above mentioned criteria and the NSAs will be preparing and exchanging a list of prisoners for the same. Doctors and experts will be visiting the prisoners in the other country to check the physical and mental conditions of the prisoners as to whether they are eligible for the swap or not. The task of list preparation is to be dealt with in priority as the NSAs. Although the LoC ceasefire seems to be a big factor troubling the Pakistani officials and affecting their response as was reportedly said by Foreign Office spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal that "they could not be implemented due to LoC [ceasefire violations] and tensions between the two countries" so far.

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