Qatar Frees 8 Indians Jailed On Alleged Spying Charges – 8 Indian citizens sentenced to death in Qatar are released, Government of India welcomed the decision.
The Indian government led by PM Narendra Modi has got a major diplomatic victory as Qatar on Monday released 8 former Indian Navy personnel who were awarded death sentence on alleged espionage charges. Earlier, after New Delhi’s diplomatic intervention, Doha had reduced the death sentence of former Indian Navy personnel to jail term.
The Indians have been released on the orders of the Emir of Qatar. Eight Indians were earlier given death sentence. After an appeal, the death sentence was changed to imprisonment for 5 to 25 years. Hearing on the second appeal was going on. Meanwhile, he was released on the orders of the Amir. Seven Indians have returned to the country. India has thanked the Emir of Qatar.
— ANI (@ANI) February 12, 2024
8 former naval personnel were arrested in August 2022
Eight former Navy personnel were arrested in August 2022 on charges of espionage and a Qatari court sentenced them to death in October. All these Indian citizens were working for Dahara Global Company. However, the allegations against him were not made public by the Qatari authorities.
Death sentence was reduced to jail sentence.
The Ministry of External Affairs had said in a press statement that, earlier, the Qatari court had commuted the death sentence of eight former personnel in the case and commuted them to jail terms for different periods. Explaining the decision, the Ministry of External Affairs had said, “We have taken note of today’s decision of the Court of Appeal of Qatar in the Dahra Global case, in which the sentences have been reduced. The Ministry of External Affairs also said that a detailed decision in the case is awaited and it is in close contact with the legal team in Qatar.
Gave 60 days time to appeal the sentence
Jaiswal, the newly appointed spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, had said that he has got 60 days to appeal on the matter in the “Court of Cassation”, the highest court of Qatar. The State Department’s legal team also has a confidential court order detailing the commutation of the death sentence to prison terms. The Qatar court had given this decision to convert the death sentence to imprisonment on 28 December 2023.
Relief after PM Modi’s meeting with Qatar Emir
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had met Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani on the sidelines of the COP28 summit in Dubai and discussed bilateral partnership and the “wellbeing of the Indian community” living in Qatar. PM Modi had arrived on 1 December 2023 to attend the COP28 summit.
This post originally appeared on ndtv.in