Millennium Post

Pak-detained clerics back; India relieved

The two Nizamuddin clerics Asif Ali Nizami and Nazim Nizami, who had been detained in Pakistan, returned to India on Monday and refuted the claims made by Pakistan newspaper 'Ummat' that they are RAW agents and also have links with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM ) in Pakistan. "On the whole, people on both sides are good but there are some who want to disrupt peace. Ummat, a Pakistani newspaper has spread false propoganda against us," said Nazim Nizami.

The two clerics also distributed clippings of Ummat to journalists who had gathered outside their house. Addressing a large gathering of media in Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah, Nazim Nizami thanked External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and the Indian Government for their efforts to bring them back safely.

They, however, evaded the question of whether they had been detained by Pakistan intelligence agencies and the ISI. "We are going to divulge more details after we meet Sushmaji," said Nazim Nizami.

However, sources confirmed to Millennium Post that they had, indeed, been held by Pak intelligence agencies and were taken to an 'undisclosed location'. Earlier, Pak media had reported that the two Indian clerics were in interior Sindh where there was no communication network.

However, these claims are quite unlikely to be believed as the two would have informed the family before going to a place not in their tour list. Their phones were not picked up even after numerous calls from the family and friends between March 15 and March 18.

The two clerics met External Affairs Minsiter Sushma Swaraj later in the day. "All that matters for us is the safe return of my father and his nephew. We are thankful to the Indian government." said Sajid Nizami, son of Asif Ali Nizami.

While Nazim Nizami was detained at Lahore Airport, Asif Nizami was detained at Karachi Airport on March 15 while he was there to visit his 90-year-old sister.
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