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150 Indian Dead Bodies lying in the Country, says Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia

Indian Government is keen to prove the pro--active nature of Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia by denying Indian corpses debate

New Delhi, Dec 23, 2016: The Ministry of External Affairs denied the accusation that the Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia has been inactive in dispatching 150 dead bodies from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana that are lying in mortuaries.

It was also stated that the embassy is actively pursuing the cases on top. Terming the figures “misleading and completely false,” MEA official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said there are only 10 cases belonging to the same. He added that the hold-up in bringing back the mortal remains of these people to India was because of procedural delays.

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“It is factually misleading and completely false that report refers to 150 bodies from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh lying in the mortuaries in Saudi Arabia. In reality, there are only about 10 cases that pertain to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and the total number of bodies is nowhere near the figure just mentioned. Moreover, the report fails to appreciate the context of diaspora community in Saudi Arabia,” Swarup stated to ANI.

He also noted that there are over two million Indians who are staying and working in the country out of which three to four death cases are written down daily due to natural causes.

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Swarup mentioned most cases are “clear cases” as per local norms and it takes around three weeks to send mortal remains even if the documents are in order.

“In cases of unnatural death, suicide, murder and also in those cases where the families doubt the circumstances of death, the investigation procedure is very lengthy causing delay in completion of documentation and transportation of mortal remains. In some cases the families demand release of compensation first before the dispatch of mortal remains whereas compensation is a legal process and it takes years in other cases,” Swarup added.

Earlier, media reports had said that families of at least 150 people from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have been waiting for the mortal remains for more than a year. The inactivity of the Indian Embassy was mostly blamed for this condition.

However, with an official statement like this, it seems like the MEA authorities are taking these allegations seriously and trying to clear all accusations as Swarup mentioned how the Embassy issues no objection certificates on a 24*7 basis, mentioned ANI.

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Reportedly, four letters are needed to be submitted to Indian embassy in Riyadh to let the bodies return to the country. These four letters include medical and police reports, a consent letter from the family and a declaration that no monetary assistance would be demanded either from Saudi government or the employer. Saudi Arabia has a sponsorship system named Khafila system whereby a sponsor is responsible to complete paper work and dispatch mortal remains.

However, Swarup said, the Indian Embassy can only intervene whenever there are delays in transportation of mortal remains.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang






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