Dr Khalil Chishty, a Pakistani scientist who has been fighting a legal battle in India for two decades is finally a free man today. He walked out of the Ajmer Jail at 4:30 pm, after his brother Jameel Chishty furnished two bail bonds of Rs 50,000 each and a personal surety of Rs 1 lakh.
The 80 year old doctor from Pakistan entered the Ajmer Jail last January after being sentenced to life imprisonment. This sentencing came after an 18 year trial, during which he remained mostly under house arrest.
Dr Chishty was accused of killing a man during a brawl in Ajmer way back in April 1992. He was visiting the Rajasthan city then to offer prayers at the famous shrine of Sufi saint Hazrat Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti.
Today walking slowly out of prison, the doctor said that the problems of prisoners should be considered sympathetically without looking at boundaries created by nations.
What will come as a big relief to the 80-year-old doctor is that the court had no other condition for him to travel to his home country, except those put forth by the Supreme Court.
When granting him bail on Monday, the Supreme Court had agreed to hear his plea to return to Karachi but had asked his lawyers to file a separate petition for this, now seen as a mere formality.
Sources said Dr Chishty's case was discussed at Sunday's lunch meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari during the latter's one-day India visit. Pakistani officials have urged India to set Dr Chishty free, the sources said.