A Qatar court has awarded death sentence to eight retired Indian Navy personnel for reportedly spying on behalf of Israel against Qatar. India, while expressing shock over the development, has also said that it will contest the decision.
Who actually are these people at the centre of the entire matter? Let's find out. The eight retired Indian Navy personnel are Captain Navtej Singh Gill, Captain Saurabh Vashisht, Commander Purenendu Tiwari, Captain Birendra Kumar Verma, Commander Sugunakar Pakala, Commander Sanjeev Gupta, Commander Amit Nagpal and Sailor Ragesh.
As per reports, they worked at Qatar's Dahra Global Technologies and Consulting Services, a private company that offers training and other services to the defence and security agencies of Qatar.
In August last year, these eight individuals were arrested after being charged with spying for Israel by Qatar authorities.
Indian authorities have been providing consular access to them since the time of their imprisonment. Reacting to the development, the External Affairs Ministry in a statement on Thursday, said: "The Court of First Instance of Qatar has today passed a judgement in the case involving 8 Indian employees of Al Dahra company.
We are deeply shocked by the verdict of death penalty and are awaiting the detailed judgement. We are in touch with the family members and the legal team, and we are exploring all legal options.
"We attach high importance to this case, and have been following it closely. We will continue to extend all consular and legal assistance. We will also take up the verdict with Qatari authorities," it added.
Due to the confidential nature of proceedings of this case, it would not be appropriate to make any further comment at this juncture, the statement further said.