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Mosul Survivor Harjit Masih Says he Told Govt About Death of Indians; Swaraj Denies

The lone survivor of the Mosul kidnapping Harjit Masih said External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s statement on Tuesday about the death of 39 Indians in Mosul confirms what he has been telling the government for the last three years.

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Updated:March 20, 2018, 3:02 PM IST
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Mosul Survivor Harjit Masih Says he Told Govt About Death of Indians; Swaraj Denies
File photo of the lone survivor of the Mosul kidnapping Harjit Masih.
New Delhi: The lone survivor of the Mosul kidnapping Harjit Masih said External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s statement on Tuesday about the death of 39 Indians in Mosul confirms what he has been telling the government for the last three years.

“It would have been better if I would have died there. I got stuck in this thing for I told truth to the government about the death of all the 39 Indians in Mosul,” Masih told CNN-News18.

However, Swaraj dismissed his claims during her statement in Rajya Sabha. “He was not willing to tell me how he escaped,” she said.

Masih further added that a fake case was registered against him after his return from Iraq and he had to spend six months in jail.

“These cases have been registered against me by the families of 39 deceased. Even my father died because of this tension,” he added.

Swaraj announced in the Parliament that all 39 Indians abducted by the ISIS in Mosul in 2015 were dead. The minister confirmed that DNA tests conducted on the exhumed bodies confirmed the identity of the dead.

The shocked families accused the government of fooling them for almost five years.

Manjit Kaur, wife of Devendra Singh, who was among the 39 missing Indians from Mosul, said she came to know of her husband’s death from TV channels.

Parminder Lucky, whose three relatives were among those abducted in Mosul, said all these years government told him and other family members that their people were safe.

“We met the government officials 12-13 times and every time we would only be asked to trust the government. Now, what have they done?” said Lucky.

Lucky was also in Iraq with his relatives but had come back to Hoshiarpur for a two-week holiday, post which he could not go back due to certain issues. He found another job and soon after he heard about the kidnappings.

The families, he added, assumed that the government must have some proof of the Indians being alive in Mosul which is why they were certain of not declaring them dead.

“This just shows that they were trying to save their face and their government all these years. It is only us who have lost out in the end,” he said.

Another family member told News18 that the mother of one of the victims had been admitted to the hospital as she fainted upon hearing the news.

Sushma had personally met the familes of the kidnapped persons several times and assured them that the government was "fully and continuously engaged" and "every possible effort" was being made to ensure their release.

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| Edited by: Ashutosh Tripathi
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