Jagtar Singh Johal’s Wife issues Appeal on Detention Anniversary

The wife of Jagtar Singh Johal has issued a fresh appeal on the anniversary of his imprisonment in India, calling for his urgent release.

MPs call for Release of detained Jagtar Singh Johal

"I still have nightmares of that day"

The wife of Jagtar Singh Johal has called on the Government to urgently secure his release.

It comes on the fourth anniversary of his imprisonment in India.

Mr Johal, of Dumbarton, Scotland, was arrested on November 4, 2017, after travelling to Punjab, India for his wedding.

He was imprisoned without trial, having been accused of being involved in the killing of Hindu leaders.

The UK Sikh Federation says Mr Johal was abducted by plainclothed police officers while shopping with his wife Gurpreet Kaur.

Mr Johal has claimed that he has been subjected to torture and mistreatment by Indian authorities.

To mark four years since her husband’s detention, Ms Johal wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pleading for the Government to intervene.

She said: “Today marks 4 years since that terrifying day when the police snatched and kidnapped Jaggi from my arms.

“I still have nightmares of that day and the subsequent torture of Jaggi.

“The UK government must listen and act to secure the release and return of my husband after 4 years of incarceration.

“We were hopeful all charges would be dropped against Jagtar at the last hearing in October 2021, but the case was adjourned once again until January 2022 as the Indian authorities were unable to produce any evidence in court.

“All I want and pray for is that my husband comes back home and we can start our life together, but I worry for his and my mental and physical health due to all this suffering.”

Ms Johal also requested a face-to-face meeting with Foreign Secretary Lizz Truss, adding:

“I need Liz Truss as the Foreign Secretary and as a wife to look me in the eye and tell me when I will be reunited with my husband.

“I am suffering in silence and finding it difficult to continue.

“I want her to meet with me so she can hear about my pain.”

On November 3, 2021, SNP MP Martin Docherty-Hughes raised the issue in Prime Minister’s Questions, telling Parliament:

“The Prime Minister is very much aware of my constituent Jagtar Singh Johal, who was abducted by plainclothes officers while shopping with his new wife in the city of Jalandhar, Punjab on the 4th of November.

“The intervening years, Mr Speaker, have seen allegations of torture overlooked and ostensibly strong words from his government about the case overshadowed by excitement over a trade deal with the Republic of India.

“Therefore, Mr Speaker, as we approach the fourth anniversary of Jagtar’s arrest tomorrow, with no charges having been brought in the case by the government of India, will this government be able to grant the smallest of favours to Jagtar’s wife and his family in Dumbarton and declare his detention an arbitrary one.”

Mr Johnson responded: “Mr Speaker, I thank him for the campaign that he’s been running for a long time.

“And what I would say to him is that the closeness of our relationship with India in no way diminishes our willingness to raise that case with the government of India.

“Indeed, the Foreign Secretary raised it only the last time she was in India.”

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”