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Hamid Ansari Gets A Heartening Welcome, Returns To Home Ater Six Years Of Imprisonment

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| December 20 , 2018 , 15:24 IST

Hamid Nihal Ansari, a software engineer, returned to his hometown Mumbai after spending six years in a Pakistani jail on charges of espionage on Thursday morning. He was handed over to India at the Wagah-Attari border on December 18.

Speaking to the Media His father said, Ansari, left New Delhi in the morning in an Air India flight and arrived at the Mumbai airport around 9.30 am.

Relatives, friends and well-wishers greeted Ansari and cheered for him as he came out of the airport. The family then left for their residence in suburban Versova.

Pakistani Army arrested Ansari in 2012 for illegally entering that country from Afghanistan, reportedly to meet a woman he had befriended online. Authorities in Pakistan slapped espionage charges against him.

The Mumbai resident, who returned to India on Tuesday via Wagah-Attari border, was imprisoned in the Peshawar Central Jail after being sentenced by a military court on December 15, 2015.

Official sources said that India issued 96 notes verbales to Pakistan seeking consular access to Ansari. The decision to release him was taken on account of relentless pressure from New Delhi.
Shortly before his arrival, his mother Fauzia Ansari said to media that the prayers of the family and of all those who wished for his safe return were answered.

Ansari and his family have thanked External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her ministry for persisting with the case and taking it up with Islamabad.

His jail term ended on December 15 but he was not able to leave for India as his legal documents were not ready.
On Thursday, the Peshawar High Court gave the Pakistan government a month's deadline to complete his repatriation process.
Ansari had an emotional interaction with Swaraj on Wednesday as he narrated the difficult phase he had to endure through in Pakistan