Ex-Navy officers detained in Qatar are our priority, assures EAM Jaishankar

Considering the case of Ex-Navy officers detained in Qatar as "sensitive", External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that the Indian side is constantly in touch with the government of Qatar, as he assured the officers are a priority for the country as well.

ANIUpdated: Wednesday, December 07, 2022, 09:21 PM IST
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EAM Jaishankar | Photo: PTI

New Delhi: Considering the case of Ex-Navy officers detained in Qatar as "sensitive", External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that the Indian side is constantly in touch with the government of Qatar, as he assured the officers are a priority for the country as well.

"This is a very sensitive case. Their interests are foremost in our minds. Ambassadors and senior officials are in constant touch with Qatar's govt. We assure, they're our priority," the EAM said during his address to the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday.

During a presser on December 1, the official spokesperson of MEA, Arindam Bagchi also underlined that India is regularly responding to the case of ex-Indian Navy officers arrested in Qatar as the embassy is actively pursuing the issue.

He said that the detained Indians are in touch with family members in India.

"We've been responding to this regularly. Our embassy is actively pursuing the case. We understand that detained Indians are able to speak to their families in India over the telephone now, some of them have families staying in Doha," MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said during the presser.

The MEA spokesperson further added that some detainees have families in Doha and are being allowed to have physical meetings on a weekly basis.

Earlier, among 8 former naval officers detained in Doha, retired commander Punendu Tiwari's sister Dr Meetu Bhargava who lives in Gwalior has sought help from the government to bring her brother back.

In the first week of November, she told ANI, " I tweeted on October 25 and appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring back my brother who is in illegal detention in Doha, Qatar. My brother is a retired navy commander officer and he went there to provide training to Qatar Navy through his company Dahra Global Consultancy Services".

"There are eight ex-Indian Navy officers, including my brother lying in illegal detention. They were picked up by the Qatar police during the night on August 30. There were no charges against them. Neither the Qatar government told us nor the Indian government has information about any charges imposed on them," she added.

Furthermore, the EAM also spoke at length on India's Foreign Policy and its direct impact on the daily lives of Indian citizens.

"Foreign policy has a direct impact on the daily lives of all Indian...our endeavour is that the welfare of Indian people is ensured however challenging the situation", EAM Jaishankar said in Rajya Sabha.

The EAM also underscored how India is a member of a growing number of groups and mechanisms, Some of which are established whereas some are emerging.

"Currently, Indias is a member of a growing number of groups and mechanisms. Some of them are relatively established like BRICS and Commonwealth...others have been more recent like QUAD and SCO....and still, others are emerging like I2U2 and Indo pacific economic framework (IPEF).

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