The mortal remains of 38 Indians out of 39 killed in Iraq by Islamic State today reached Guru Ramdas International airport here. The Minister of State for External Affairs Mr. V.K. Singh reached Amritsar with the mortal remains from Iraq in the Indian Air Force plane. At the Guru Ramdas International airport, Local Government Minister, Punjab, Mr. Navjot Singh Sidhu received the mortal remains of 27 Punjabis on behalf of the State Government. The mortal remains of 4 youth hailing from Himachal Pradesh were received by the Food Supply & Consumer Affairs Minister, Himachal Pradesh Mr. Kishan Kapoor while the mortal remains of 7 youth belonging to West Bengal and Bihar were taken by Mr. V.K. Singh in another plane to Kolkata from Amritsar.
Addressing a press conference at the airport Mr. Navjot Singh Sidhu said that he was sent specially by the Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh to share the grief of the bereaved families and it is as per the directions of the Chief Minister that he is announcing government job as per qualification to a member of the bereaved families besides Rs. 5 lakh cash. He further said that the Punjab Government is already providing pension to these bereaved families to the tune of Rs. 20000 per month and also that the government stands with them in their hour of grief. Further adding, he said that he is grieved that our people have been killed on foreign soil by the terrorists. He also made it clear that the Punjab Government in collaboration with the Union Government would take stringent action against the travel agents sending youth abroad by unfair means. Mr. Sidhu also thanked Mr. V.K. Singh due to whose efforts the remains of these youth have been able to reach home.
On the occasion, Union Minister of State for External Affairs Mr. V.K. Singh appealed to the people to refrain from sending their children abroad through unfair means by playing into the hands of unscrupulous elements because the promises made by the travel agents generally don’t come to fruition. He also said that the Ministry of External Affairs maintained contact with the Iraqi army continuously and located the remains of these youth. After that, on the basis of the DNA reports the families of the youth were identified leading to the mortal remains being brought to India. He further revealed that the DNA of one Indian didn’t match fully so his remains could not be brought back home. He said that the Union Government would in league with the State Government extend every possible assistance to the bereaved families.
It is worth mentioning that the Punjab Government extended every kind of help to the parents and other family members of the youth who had come to collect the remains of their dear ones. The district administration deployed an officer each with an ambulance under the leadership of the Deputy Commissioner Mr. Kamaldeep Singh Sangha to make sure that the remains reach the homes of the youth. The officers completed the formalities concerning immigration and medical documents and then proceeded with the remains.
On the occasion, Union Minister Mr. Vijay Sampla, Lok Sabha MP Mr. Gurjit Singh Aujla, MLA Mr. Harpartap Singh Ajnala, Mr. Lali Majithia and other personalities were also present to share the grief of the bereaved families. On behalf of the district administration, Additional Chief Administrator Mr. Tejinder Pal Singh Sandhu, Additional Deputy Commissioner Mr. Ravinder Singh, Additional Deputy Commissioner Mr. Subhash Kumar, Assistant Commissioner Alka Kalia, SDM Mr. Nitish Singla, SDM Mr. Rajat Oberoi, SDM Mr. Vikas Heera, SDM Mr. Ravinder Singh Arora, Joint Commissioner Mr. Saurav Arora and other senior officers from the various departments were also present to extend every assistance to the bereaved families.