UAE: More than 270 Pakistani inmates released from prisons during Ramadan

The community welfare attaché at the Pakistan Embassy in Abu Dhabi said that over 100 people have been released just in the UAE capital


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Mon 8 Apr 2024, 2:32 PM

Last updated: Mon 8 Apr 2024, 4:26 PM

More than 270 Pakistani inmates have been released from the UAE prisons during the holy month of Ramadan.

These people were released on the orders of the rulers of the seven emirates.

Samiullah Khan, community welfare attaché at the Pakistan Embassy in Abu Dhabi, said over 100 people have been released in the UAE capital during Ramadan. “Those who have their passport and other travel documents, have left the country, the process is underway for the people who don’t have their passports and travel documents,” Khan told Khaleej Times in an interview on Monday.

“Most of the inmates were released from Ajman and Sharjah and then the rest of the other Northern Emirates. And the majority – 95 per cent – of them have been repatriated back to the home country,” said Imran Shahid, community welfare attaché at the Consulate General of Pakistan in Dubai.

People who were behind bars for minor crimes are usually pardoned during the holy month to reflect the UAE rulers’ keenness to reunite the pardoned individuals with their families.

In total, the UAE rulers pardoned around 2,600 prisoners as a goodwill gesture during the holy month. The majority of the inmates were released in Abu Dhabi (735), followed by Dubai (691), Sharjah (484), Ras Al Khaimah (368) and Ajman (314).

The UAE is home to 1.8 million Pakistanis with the majority of them living and working in Dubai and the Northern Emirates. The UAE is also one of the largest sources of foreign exchange in the form of remittances, remitting over $2 billion every month.

Shahid told Khaleej Times that officials of the Pakistani missions in the UAE visit prisons time and again where issues such as air tickets and travel documents are brought to their attention by the authorities. “So we do our best to expedite the process to release the inmates and repatriate them.”

On average, he said, around 70-80 people are provided air tickets by the Dubai mission every month to the people who are needy and want to fly back to their home country. “In some months, the number goes down to 20-30 people and it goes as high as 100 a month as well.”


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