India works on repatriation of former Maldivian VP Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Ghafoor

Chennai: A day after Ahmed Adeeb Abdul Ghafoor, former Vice President of Maldives was detained on board a boat off the Thoothukudi coast in southern Tamil Nadu, India began working on repatriating him while his lawyers insisted on an asylum.

Adeeb had come on the boat as a stowaway and was detained on the basis of intelligence inputs. Indian authorities including Tamil Nadu Director General of Police J K Tripathi had on Thursday said that the former Maldivian Vice President, who was jailed and later acquitted on charges of plotting to assassinate former President Abdulla Yameen, was not arrested.

As he spent the night on the boat off the coast, a law firm Guernica 37 International Justice Chambers claiming to represent Adeeb, said that he has sought asylum in India as he faces a serious risk to his life in his home country.

In a statement the law firm said that since he has sought asylum, the Indian authorities “are under an obligation to consider his request and to ensure that he is not arbitrarily handed over to the authorities of the Republic of Maldives,

where he is at the risk of ill-treatment.” Any contrary decision by India would go against the principle of ''non-refoulement'' and unlawful, the firm added.

By Dravida Thambi

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