A total of 519 fishermen from Gujarat are languishing in Pakistani jails, till December 2021. This information was given to Gujarat Assembly by Minister of State for Fisheries Jitu Chaudhary in a written reply to Congress MLA Punja Vansh’s starred question, on Wednesday.

As per the minister’s reply, 163 and 195 fishermen were apprehended by Pakistani authorities in 2020 and 2021 respectively. It further said that the state government has made a total 18 representations to the Union Home Ministry to get these fishermen released.

Chaudhary also informed the state assembly that 247 fishermen are languishing in Pakistani jails for one year, 76 for three years and one fisherman has been languishing there for more than five years.

In reply to another question by Congress legislator Ashwin Kotwal, Chaudhary said that in 2021, a total of 20 Gujarati fishermen were released from Pakistani jails.

The Gujarat government is paying Rs 300 as daily maintenance cost to the families of these imprisoned fishermen and in the last two years, it has paid over Rs 6.58 crore for the same.

In reply to another separate starred question, Chaudhary informed the Assembly that to ascertain the identity of fishermen in sea, the state government has issued biometric cards to over 1.68 fishermen.