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Missed daughter's wedding, it's part of life: Ex-Navy officer on return from Qatar

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Retired Indian Navy commander B K Verma, who returned to India on Monday after being released from a Qatar jail, with his wife at a function in Indore, Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Retired Indian Navy commander B K Verma, who returned to India on Monday after being released from a Qatar jail, with his wife at a function in Indore, Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Indore: "It happens. It's part of our lives," retired Indian Navy commander B K Verma who has returned from Qatar says with stoicism while talking about his daughter's wedding that he could not attend.

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Verma (58) was among the eight former Indian Navy personnel released from a jail in Qatar. Seven of them returned to India on Monday.

They were sentenced to death in October last year for alleged espionage, but the death sentence was later commuted.

The release from jail would not have been possible without Prime Minister Narendra Modi's personal intervention, Verma told PTI here on Tuesday.

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The Navi Mumbai resident was in Madhya Pradesh's Indore city to attend a wedding in the family.

"I am very happy to be back among my family members. It is also a big relief for my family. My joy has also increased because today is the wedding of my nephew," Verma said.

"It is due to Prime Minister Modi's personal intervention that I am sitting here today. I thank him from the bottom of my heart on behalf of myself and my colleagues. I also thank the Emir of Qatar for his magnanimous consideration of my case," he added.

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Verma could not attend his daughter's wedding on November 27, 2022.

"But that's okay. It happens. I was a Navy officer. Even when we are naval officers, we have to travel to many places and at that time also we are not able to spend many moments with the family. It's all part of our lives," he said.

Verma said he wanted to be with his wife and children now and also meet all his friends who stood by the family in difficult times.

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His wife Suman thanked God for his release and said reuniting with him was a moment they were "forever waiting for".

"Looking at him again, I was thinking if he is really in front of me...," she said.

"My husband's presence at the wedding in Indore makes me feel like we are reliving our daughter's wedding moment. My daughter is also with us," she added.

She also thanked the Indian government for its efforts to secure her husband's release.

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