Indian Navy chief Admiral R Hari Kumar stated on Friday that the government is making full efforts to repatriate eight ex-naval staff from Qatar, who have been sentenced to death by a Qatari court.
"We are working closely to ensure that their interests are looked after," Admiral Kumar said at a media briefing.
"The government of India is putting all-out efforts to ensure they are brought back," he said, The New Indian Express reported.
The Court of First Instance in Qatar handed down a death sentence to the Indian nationals on 26 October. The ruling was described as "deeply" shocking by India, with the Ministry of External Affairs vowing to explore all legal avenues in the case.
The legal team of the imprisoned Indian nationals has already lodged an appeal against the death sentence, and a higher court in Qatar has already admitted the plea.
The Indian nationals, who worked with the private company Al Dahra, were arrested in August last year, reportedly in an alleged case of espionage.
The charges against these Indian individuals were not publicly disclosed by either the Qatari officials or New Delhi.
Following the Qatari court's decision, the MEA last month said that it is attaching "high importance" to this case and is exploring all legal options. The charges were filed against the eight Indian Navy veterans on 25 March, and they were tried under Qatari law.
The ex-Navy officers, who had served in the Indian Navy for as long as 20 years, all had "unblemished stints" and had held important positions, including that of instructors in the force, according to former military officials cited in the TNIE report.
An appeal from Swarajya
At Swarajya, we rely on our readers' support through subscriptions to sustain our media platform. Unlike larger conglomerates, we are unable to relentlessly chase advertising money — our model is largely built on your patronage.
Your support has never been more crucial. We work tirelessly to deliver 10-15 high-quality articles daily, ensuring you receive insightful content from 7 AM to 10 PM.
If you believe India's story has to be articulated in a way it has never been done before without shrugging it off, become a patron (or) subscribe now for ₹̶2̶4̶0̶0̶ ₹1999 and get 12 print issues, unlimited digital access for 1 year, a special India that is Bharat T-shirt (Offer ends soon).
We are counting on you!