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Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

New Delhi: India on Thursday said it had sought further consular access to eight of its former navy officers under detention in Qatar for nearly three months.

Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesman Arindam Bagchi said the Indian embassy in Doha has been pursuing the matter with the Qatar authorities.

Bagchi said some relatives of the detained officers were allowed to meet them in Qatar.

Qatar authorities had taken Commander Purnendu Tiwari (retd), the managing director of Dahra Global Technologies and Consultancy Services, and seven others into custody on August 30.

The other detained officers are Cdr Navtej Singh Gill, Cdr Birendra Kumar Verma, Cdr Sugunakar Pakala, Cdr Sanjeev Gupta, Cdr Amit Nagpal, Capt Saurab Vasisht, and Ragesh Gopakumar.

“I would refer you to the government of Qatar for the reasons for their arrest,” Bagchi said to questions about the reasons for the arrest of the eight Indian nationals.

“This issue is something that we have been pursuing. Our embassy in Doha has been regularly raising the issue with Qatari authorities,” he said.

“Some family members have been recently permitted to visit their relatives in detention. We are separately seeking further consular access. As soon as we have further updates, we will continue to share them,” the external affairs ministry spokesman said.

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