Chandigarh, Fifteen Indians, including 14 Punjabi men, who were on death row in United Arab Emirates (UAE) after being convicted in two murder cases, have been released after a non-government organisation (NGO), ‘Sarbat Da Bhala Trust’, paid blood money to the relatives of victims.
Fourteen of them have returned to India recently, including ten persons who were released on June 15 and brought here by SPS Oberoi, a businessman from Dubai, who runs the NGO.
Addressing a press conference here on Friday, Oberoi said only one of the convicted Indians, Dharamvir Singh, is now left in UAE and he too will return after his paperwork is completed.
He said one of the two cases in which five of these Indians were convicted pertained to the murder of 38-year-old Varinder Chouhan of Shekhanura village of Azamgarh district in Uttar Pradesh. He was killed on November 4, 2011.
In this case, a Sharjah court had awarded death sentence Dharmendra of Chapra in Bihar, Harwinder Singh of Ajnala in Amritsar, Ranjit Ram of Zinsra in Nawanshahr, Dalwinder Singh of Malpur in Hoshiarpur and Sucha Singh of Jasso Majra in Patiala.
In the other case, a Pakistani national, Mohammad Farhan, was killed in July 2015. Ten Punjabi men were convicted and awarded death penalty in this case by an Al Ain court.
Those convicted were Satminder Singh of Thikriwal in Barnala, Chander Shekhar of Nawanshahr, Chamkaur Singh of Malerkotla, Kulwinder Singh of Ludhiana, Balwinder Singh of Cholang in Ludhiana, Dharamvir Singh of Samrala, Harjinder Singh of Mohali, Tarsem Singh of Mudh in Amritsar, Gurpreet Singh of Patiala, Jagjeet Singh of Gurdaspur and Kuldeep Singh of Tarn Taran.
“After families of some of these convicts approached us for help, our organisation reached out to the kin of the victims who were murdered and paid them ‘blood money’ to get the convicts released from Gulf prisons as per the laws of the land,” he said.
Oberoi, while advising the Indian parents to avoid sending their children under labour category to Arab countries, said, “Punjab youths are being trapped by the gangs there to earn easy bucks. They later indulge in illegal activities, which ultimately results in such a situation.”
He said ‘Sarbat Da Bhala Trust’ has an office in almost every district in Punjab and before sending their children to UAE, parents should visit its office and show the documents. “Our trust will verify the company where their ward has applied for the job,” he said.