Efforts on in Pak to send deaf and mute Indian girl back

Karachi: The Sindh government has established contact with a well known welfare foundation to obtain details of a deaf and mute Indian woman, who had inadvertently strayed into Pakistan at least 13 years ago, as efforts were being made to send her back to her native place.

An official of the Edhi trust foundation which has taken care of Geeta for the last few years and has housed her in Karachi for the last six months said there had been inquiries from authorities about the Indian girl.

"They have taken her details and are apparently some efforts are on to help her safely reach her home in India," the official said.

Geeta who is just 21, strayed into Pakistan when she mistakenly boarded a train from Amritsar which came into Lahore where she was taken into custody.

"She is deaf and mute and clearly disoriented but in last six months she has improved her communication skills a lot and we are hopeful in next few weeks she will be able to tell us about her family and home in India," Bilqees Edhi, the wife of the noted social worker Sattar Edhi, who takes care of Geeta, said.

Bilqees has even taken Geeta into her home to help her settle down and live a normal life.

"She had a bad time when she was first detained in Lahore and kept at a shelter there after which we brought her to Karachi," she said.

Geeta is clearly desperate to get back to India and has made some attempts to escape but each time has brought back to the Edhi trust as she is unable to give any details of her life in India or her family.

Saram Burney a human rights activist who has campaigned for the return of poor Indian fishermen in Pakistani jails to their homeland believes that Geeta can return home.

"She is disoriented and it is difficult getting information from her but she is now able to write down things in Hindi language," he said.