In a rare gesture from Pakistan’s side, India’s neighbour country has sent a message of thanks after a five-year-old Pakistani boy was reunited with his mother on Saturday at the Wagah-Attari border crossing, with some help from Indian authorities.
The boy, Iftikhar Ahmed, had been taken “forcibly” to India by his father, who belongs to Jammu and Kashmir, a year ago.
Pakistan thanked India for the help in helping with the boy’s return.
The Pakistan high commission in New Delhi said that the five-year-old boy was lodged for some time in a hotel in Amritsar with a senior diplomat and later taken to Wagah.
Pakistan high commissioner Abdul Basit “appreciated the cooperative role of Indian government” in the return of Iftikhar Ahmed, the statement said.
In March 2016, Iftikhar’s father Gulzar Ahmed took him to Ganderbal district in Jammu and Kashmir. Subsequently, the boy’s mother Rohina Kiyani who belongs to Pakistan-administered Kashmir, filed a case in an Indian court for his custody.
The verdict on the case was given in May 2016, but due to the growing border tensions it took eight months for the mother to get her son’s custody.
Gulzar had allegedly lied to his wife that he was taking Iftikhar to a wedding with him. He took the boy to Dubai and then to Ganderbal.
However, after the case was taken up by the Pakistan high commission and it was proven that Iftikhar was a Pakistani national, the verdict was given that he be repatriated to Pakistan.
(With inputs from PTI)