Hamid Nihal Ansari, the software engineer who returned home after spending six years in a Pakistani jail, told External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj that he landed up in the neighbouring country in pursuit of the girl he was in love with.
Asked about the meeting at a media briefing Thursday, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said Swaraj inquired about his wellbeing during their interaction.
"EAM did ask how he landed up in Pakistan. He did explain that through a twist of circumstances...what he said was that he was in love with a girl and in pursuit of that girl he followed her and landed up in Pakistan," Kumar said.
"He was arrested on the suspicion of being a spy. The girl for whom he had gone to Pakistan actually testified in his favour that he had come to meet her, but he was put in jail. He had to spend more than the time for which he was sentenced," Kumar said.
Ansari was arrested in Pakistan in 2012 for illegally entering the country from Afghanistan, reportedly to meet a girl he had befriended online.
Authorities in Pakistan had slapped charges of espionage against him.
Sources said though the girl testified in a court in Ansari's favour, he could not meet her. They said Ansari had applied for a visa in Pakistan High Commission but it was not granted to him.
Officials said 33-year-old Ansari, who came back to India on December 18, became emotional while talking about the difficult phase of his life in Pakistan.
Ansari, who was accompanied by his mother and other family members, also thanked Swaraj and the Ministry of External Affairs for persisting with the case and taking it up with Islamabad.
The Mumbai resident, who returned to India after crossing the Wagah-Attari border, was imprisoned in the Peshawar Central Jail after being sentenced by a military court on December 15, 2015.
The Mumbai resident, who returned to India Tuesday after crossing the Wagah-Attari border, was imprisoned in the Peshawar Central Jail after being sentenced by a military court on December 15, 2015