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Qatar Court Accepts India’s Appeal, Reconsiders Death Sentence for 8 Indian Ex Navy Officers

Successful Intervention by India Leads to Reevaluation of Espionage Charges in Qatar

New Delhi, November 24, 2023 – In a significant turn of events, the Qatari court has accepted India’s appeal against the death sentence handed down to eight former Indian naval officers. The officers, who were employed by Dehra Global Technologies and Consultancy Services, faced charges of espionage and were sentenced to death last month.

The successful appeal by the Government of India has prompted the Qatari court to reconsider the death sentence imposed on Captain Navtej Singh Gill, Captain Birendra Kumar Verma, Captain Saurabh Vashishth, Commander Amit Nagpal, Commander Purnendu Tiwari, Commander Sugunakar Pakala, Commander Sanjeev Gupta, and Sailor Ragesh.

Times Now, quoting family sources of the officers, reported that the Qatari court accepted India’s appeal, although no official confirmation has been provided by the Ministry of External Affairs. With the acceptance of the appeal, the court will reexamine the case before making a final decision. The new date for the hearing will be announced soon.

The ordeal began in August 2022 when the eight officers were arrested on suspicion of spying for Israel. The First Class Court in Qatar conducted hearings from March 2023 and subsequently sentenced them to death. All eight had served a year in jail prior to the verdict.

India’s response to the verdict was swift. The Ministry of External Affairs expressed shock at the death sentence and emphasized their commitment to exhausting all legal avenues. The appeal also requested permission for the officers to return home.

While the court’s decision is under review, the Ministry of External Affairs remains in contact with the families and legal representatives of the officers. The specifics of the court order are awaited, and the Indian government is determined to pursue every available legal recourse in this matter.

The eight individuals at the center of this case are Captain Navtej Singh Gill, Captain Birendra Kumar Verma, Captain Saurabh Vashishth, Commander Amit Nagpal, Commander Purnendu Tiwari, Commander Sugunakar Pakala, Commander Sanjeev Gupta, and Sailor Ragesh.

This development marks a crucial step in the ongoing legal battle for the Indian ex-naval officers, as their fate hangs in the balance pending the court’s final decision.

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