Pakistan brings back 176 stranded citizens from India
Another group of 176 Pakistanis, who were stranded in India due to the coronavirus lockdown, returned home on Wednesday.
According to Pakistan's Foreign Office, the citizens returned to Pakistan via the Attari-Wagah land border between the two countries.
The citizens were stranded in different Indian states -- including Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand -- and the capital New Delhi due to the extended lockdown and closure of the border following the outbreak of COVID-19.
According to the Foreign Office, almost 400 stranded Pakistanis have so far been evacuated from India since March 20.
"In line with the Prime Minister's directions, for safe and smooth repatriation of stranded Pakistanis, the High Commission for Pakistan in New Delhi remained in close contact with the Indian side and the Foreign Office has been coordinating with other national authorities in Pakistan," the High Commission of Pakistan said in a statement issued on Tuesday.
The commission in New Delhi also facilitated and coordinated logistics for the transfer of these people to Attari from more than 20 different Indian cities.
Some of them were getting treatment in different hospitals in India, while many of them were visiting their families before the lockdown.
The commission has established a special help desk that is catering to special requests of Pakistanis stranded in India.
"People are calling us on our helpline and a team is also monitoring the social media. Today, we have received more than 20 new requests." the High Commission told Anadolu Agency.
The number of coronavirus infection cases in India has soared to 153,237, whereas Pakistan has 59,151 confirmed cases.