Afghan Envoy Seeks Release Of Sharbat Gula On Humanitarian

Afghan envoy seeks release of Sharbat Gula on humanitarian

PESHAWAR, (Pakistan Point News - 02nd Nov, 2016 ) : Afghan Ambassador to Pakistan Dr Umar Zakhilwal Wednesday appealed to the Government of Pakistan to consider the case of green-eyed Sharbat Gula, commonly known as Afghan Mona Lisa, on humanitarian grounds as she was a widow and illiterate having no intention to do any fraud by obtaining a fake Pakistani identity card. Addressing a press conference here along with Afghan Consul General Abdullah Waheed Poyan, the ambassador said Sharbat Gula was innocent as her Pakistani identity card was obtained by her late husband which had been blocked by NADRA, a long time ago.

He appreciated the Pakistani authorities for shifting her to a hospital from jail as she was suffering from Hepatitis. She was also given due respect by arranging a private room at the hospital, he added. He said Sharbat Gula had been living at a small house in Pakistan for a long time and did not commit any crime or fraud. She was apprehended by Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) for possessing the fake identity card which was basically applied by her late husband, he added.

Dr Umar Zakhilwal said Sharbat Gula was offered by various countries to settle there but she preferred to stay in Pakistan. Despite having international fame, she did not want to become a public figure and instead led a respectable life with her children here, she added. Replying to a question, he said the Afghan government was not aware of her presence in Pakistan and the difficulties being faced by her. The ambassador also admitted that a number of Afghan refugees had obtained Pakistani identity cards owing to uncertain circumstances in Afghanistan and many of them were residing across the world using Pakistani passports and sending remittances to Pakistan, besides purchasing property in Pakistan.

The envoy said despite unpleasant relationship the two countries were bound in similar cultural and religious traditions. To another question about some Afghans being imprisoned in different Pakistani jails, he said the Afghan Embassy had recently got 120 Afghans bailed out from Adyala Jail, Rawalpindi and efforts were underway for release of the others. He said some 600,000 Afghan refugees had left for their homeland during the last three months and hopefully the rest would also be repatriated in a dignified manner.