Coinciding with the visit of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to India, Saudi Arabia on Wednesday ordered release of 850 Indian prisoners lodged in its jails.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the decision was taken on the request of Prime Minister NarendraModi.
“Another big deliverable! At the request of the PM, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia has ordered the release of 850 Indian prisoners lodged in Saudi jails,” he said in a twitter
Saudi jails hold the greatest number of Indians incarcerated in any country abroad. As of January 2019, 2,224 Indians were jailed in the kingdom for crimes including murder, kidnapping, bribery, cheating, and offences related to drugs and alcohol, according Indian Foreign Ministry figures.
Some 2.7 million Indians in Saudi Arabia form the largest expatriate community in the kingdom, with many working in low-paid jobs in sectors such as construction, domestic services and retailing that Saudis spurn.
He said Prince Mohammed has also announced an increase in the quota for Indian Haj pilgrims to 2 lakh at the request of Prime Minister Modi. The present quota is about 1.75 lakh.
The Prince also said he expected investment opportunities worth more than $100 billion in India over the next two years.