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Consular officer meets Sunil James, two other sailors in Togo jail

New Delhi, Dec.7 : A consular officer is reported to have met jailed Indian merchant navy captain Sunil James and two sailors in the West African nation of Togo on Friday.


The meeting took place even as efforts are on to secure James' release so that he can join his family in Mumbai to perform the last rites of his 11-month son who died earlier this week.

James has been under arrest in Togo since July 31 on suspicion of aiding pirates who had attacked and looted his Marshall Islands-flagged MT Ocean Centurion ship on July 16.

Sources said all avenues being pursued with the Government of Togo to secure the release of James on compassionate grounds.

Eleven-month-old Vivaan who died on December 2 after developing gangrene in his intestine while undergoing treatment at Andheri's Holy Spirit Hospital.

His body has been kept in the hospital morgue's cold storage.

Earlier this week, External Affairs Ministry spokesman Syed Akbaruddin said: "We have been following this unfortunate case of Captain Sunil James since he was arrested a few months ago, and it has taken a very sad turn. Our high commissioner is in Accra, who also handles Togo, has been in touch with our Indian honorary counsel in Togo."

"We have tried to bring in notice of the current situation to the public prosecutor and sought his assistance to try and work out a solution, which will be helpful in the current circumstances" he added.

"Together with the honorary counsel, we are hopeful that we will be able to help the family. We are fully conscious about the sensitivity of this case," he said.

Earlier in September, Sunil's wife, Aditi, had stated that her husband had been living on bread for the past one month and that he had fever and an infection in one eye, and the cell had no proper medical aide visiting.

She said that she has been pursuing the case with the governments of India and Ghana.

She has added that his condition was deteriorating and nothing was being done about it.

Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid has said the matter would be addressed as urgently as possible.

--ANI (Posted on 07-12-2013)

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