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Bodies of 38 Indian workers killed by 'IS' in Iraq returned

06 April, 2018, 03:24 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • MoS V.K. Singh V.K. Singh Mortal Remains Of 39 Dead Indians 39 Dead Indians Mortal Remains ISIS IS Iraq Mosul India News Indian Express News

Union Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh, who returned from Iraq on Monday with bodies of 38 Indians, on Monday said the workers had gone to Iraq through illegal agents.

He denied that Harjit Masih was among those 40 persons who were kidnapped four years back by IS. One man escaped pretending to be a Muslim from Bangladesh; he claims that he saw his comrades being executed by the terror group.

Addressing reporters in Amritsar, Singh said had the government had any information about these people being in danger, it would have rescued them as it had done in case of over 45 Indian nurses in 2014.

The Islamic State group swept across northern and central Iraq in 2014, eventually seizing a third of the country.

Gen VK Singh said that govt did not have any record of the 40 Indians as they had gone to Iraq through illegal travel agents.

The families advised not to open the coffins and to cremate the bodies within the coffin as the mortal remains had been exhumed from the graves and might emit toxic gases which could be unsafe.




Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi and other members of the state Cabinet also paid their respect to the deceased at the Patna airport and laid wreaths at the coffins.

Manjeet Kaur, wife of Davinder Singh, one of the 39 killed, said she hoped the state government would keep its promise.

"I am grieved that our people have been killed on foreign soil by the terrorists", said Sidhu while making it clear that the Punjab Government, in collaboration with the Union Government, would take stringent action against the travel agents sending youth overseas by unfair means. Dr Zaid Ali Abbas, head of the department, said over the phone from Baghdad that "most of the bodies had gunshot wounds on the head".

Mos said that one person's mortal remains are still in Iraq as DNA did not match.

"They were not killed because they were illegal immigrants, but due to their nationality, that is Indian".

He said there was no record of the 40 workers in any embassy. When asked how they had been killed and if they had been shot, Swaraj had said at a press conference: "Whether they were killed 6 months ago or 2 years ago becomes irrelevant because the search for the bodies could not have commenced until Mosul was liberated". Authorities are awaiting DNA samples from a first-degree relative. Initially, they refused to leave the place, saying they were not in danger. "Should not they have been rescued being Indian nationals in such a situation?" she asked.

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