he husband of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has criticised the Authorities for taking a “very very long time” to resolve the case of a Scottish Sikh blogger who has been jailed in India for 5 years.
Jagtar Singh Johal from Dumbarton was in Punjab in northern India for his marriage ceremony in 2017 when his household say he was arrested and bundled into an unmarked automobile.
He stated he has been tortured, together with by way of electrical shocks, and faces the loss of life penalty over his activism and campaigning for Sikh human rights.
MI5 and MI6 have since been accused of supplying data that led to Mr Johal’s abduction and torture.
Dozens of protesters gathered reverse Downing Road on Whitehall, central London on Thursday – precisely 5 years since Mr Johal – often known as Jaggi – was arrested.
Many held indicators which learn: “UK And India Uncovered In The Collusion And Torture of Jagtar Singh Johal” as music performed and meals was handed out.
Partly that is as a result of it solely does what it needs to do. Its protections are discretionary. It advises households to maintain quiet
Richard Ratcliffe and his spouse, who was launched from jail in Iran earlier this 12 months, each joined the protest.
Making a speech to the group, Mr Ratcliffe stated: “The federal government took a very long time to work on our case.
“It’s taking a really very long time to work on Jaggi’s case.
“Partly that’s as a result of it solely does what it needs to do. Its protections are discretionary. It advises households to maintain quiet.
“However truly, it’s solely by making noise, by making your self a nuisance, you get protected.”
Mr Ratcliffe went on to say he was “sorry” concerning the potential collusion by MI5 and MI6.
“There was collusion from the British state in Jaggi’s arrest and expertise,” he stated.
Mr Ratcliffe additionally referred to as for individuals to face in “solidarity” and ensure “nobody else has to undergo the identical expertise”.
There are roughly 100 British residents tortured by international governments annually and what number of of them have you ever heard of?
“A part of being right here actually is to be a voice of hope,” he stated.
“These battles final a very long time, they’re robust, they’re brutal, there are scars however there may be mild on the finish of the tunnel.
“The opposite purpose for being right here after all is that this can be a systemic drawback,” he continued.
“There are a variety of British residents being held unlawfully abroad.
“There are roughly 100 British residents tortured by international governments annually and what number of of them have you ever heard of?
“You’ve heard of Jaggi, you’ve heard of Nazanin – most of them you haven’t.”
Mr Johal’s brother, Gurpreet Singh Johal, additionally spoke to the group, main the mantra: “Free Jaggi, Free Jaggi, Free Jaggi.”
He stated: “The British authorities have wronged Jagtar and lots of different British residents detained overseas. We can’t let this hold occurring.
“A British nationwide, born and bred within the UK, in detention in an Indian jail for five years with out conviction.
“That is the state of affairs with the UK authorities, and so they could have even had a hand in his abduction and torture.
“Thanks for being right here. You might be all serving to to ensure the British Authorities, which have allow us to down for the final 5 years, don’t hold doing this, and also you all present Jaggi that he’s not alone.”
In the meantime, Martin Docherty-Hughes, the SNP MP for Mr Johal’s constituency, informed the protesters: “Now we have seen so many prime ministers, international secretaries that even I truly begin to lose rely.
“It’s a horrendous, and fairly frankly, a pathetic situation through which the British Authorities finds itself when it offers with my constituent’s case,” he stated.
Earlier this 12 months, a panel of UN authorized specialists stated Mr Johal’s detention is unfair, “lacks authorized foundation” and is predicated on “discriminatory grounds” owing to his Sikh religion and his “standing as a human rights defender”.
The UN stated the suitable decision could be to launch Mr Johal instantly and accord him an enforceable proper to compensation and different reparations, in accordance with worldwide regulation.
An Foriegn Workplace spokesperson stated: “Now we have constantly raised our issues about Mr Johal’s case instantly with the Authorities of India, together with his allegations of torture and his proper to a good trial and we’re dedicated to doing what we will to help him.
“The International Secretary visited India and raised his case with Exterior Affairs Minister Jaishankar on 29 October.
“The UK strongly opposes the loss of life penalty in all circumstances as a matter of precept and we’ll proceed to make this clear to the Authorities of India.”