Indian sailor under arrest in Nigeria for over a year

Kolkata,  (IANS) An Indian national, employed with a shipping company, has been under arrest in Nigeria for 13 months after the ship allegedly entered the west African nation’s waters by violating international law.

Jogesh Chandra Das, and other members of the crew were arrested in July 2014, as the merchant ship got stranded in Nigeria, his family members alleged. Das hails from Bengal.

The ship, owned by a merchant navy firm, had set sail in October 2013, from Mumbai. It was headed for South Africa. On its return voyage, the ship got stranded in Nigeria.

Das’ wife Soma, now in Delhi to plead with the central government for getting her husband free and back home, threatened to hold a sit-in at Jantar Mantar if the Indians authorities did not take any initiative in this regard.

“We have petitioned the Prime Minister’s Office and the external affairs ministry. If nothing happens, then we will demonstrate at Jantar Mantar,” she said.

“My husband and 10 members of the crew are in jail in Nigeria. We have no clue why they have been lodged in jail. We have appealed to the Indian government to intervene and get them released,” she said.

Soma said her husband calls her up from time to time from jail. “They are allowed to do this. But there has been no proper hearing of the case in Nigeria.”

 

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