UNSTARRED QUESTION NO.412
TO BE ANSWERED ON 04.02.2021
INDIANS LODGED IN FOREIGN JAILS
412. DR. KIRODI LAL MEENA
Will the Minister of EXTERNAL AFFAIRS be pleased to state:
(a) whether Government is aware that a large number of Indians are lodged in the jails of various countries including those of Pakistan and Gulf countries, if so, the details thereof;
(b) the kind of assistance being provided to them; and
(c) the steps taken/being taken by Government to ensure the release of such prisoners and to bring them safely back to the country?
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
[SHRI V. MURALEEDHARAN]
(a) As per the information available with the Ministry, the number of Indian prisoners in foreign jails as of 31.12.2020 is 7139 which also includes under-trials. Country-wise list is given at Annexure.
However, due to strong privacy laws prevailing in many countries, the local authorities do not share information on prisoners unless the person concerned consents to the disclosure of such information. Even countries which share information do not generally
provide detailed information about the foreign nationals imprisoned.
(b) & (c) Indian Missions/Posts abroad remain vigilant and closely monitor the incidents of Indian nationals being put in jail in foreign countries for violation of local laws or alleged violation of local laws. Apart from extending them all possible consular
assistance, Indian Missions and Posts also assist in providing legal aid wherever needed. Missions and Posts also maintain a local panel of lawyers where Indian community is in sizeable numbers.
There is a regular process of consultation and coordination with countries concerned on the issue of repatriation of Indian nationals in foreign prisons including in the context of bilateral agreements for Transfer of Sentenced Persons (TSP).
In addition, the Government through its Missions/Posts abroad also takes up and pursues grant of amnesty/ commutation of sentences of Indian prisoners in foreign countries.