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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Questions remain regarding death of fisherman killed in Qatar

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For illustrative purposes only
For illustrative purposes only

With reporting from Chantelle D’mello

Two weeks after an Indian fisherman from Bahrain was killed when his boat strayed into Qatar’s waters, his family has received his body and is preparing for it to be cremated.

But questions remain about the cause of the man’s death.

Karthikeyan Thangaraj, 32, hailed from the Tamil Nadu region of India. He was killed when his boat crashed into a Qatari Coast Guard patrol boat, P.S Sashi Kumar, the Indian Embassy’s deputy chief of mission, previously told Doha News.

However, Indian media reports continue to assert that Thangaraj had been shot and killed by Qatar’s Coast Guard after accidentally straying across borders while out fishing.

Three other fishermen onboard with the deceased were arrested on Sept. 21 and remain in custody in Qatar. Government officials in India have made repeated requests for their release.

Questions

According to a Times of India report published today, the deceased’s father received Thangaraj’s body on Saturday:

“(He) said that such a situation should never happen to any other fishermen families and wanted the state government to take action in releasing the other fishermen from the Qatar prison. The other three fishermen who are languishing in jail are Ayyapan, Samayamuthu and Raju.

The fishermen were working in Bahrain and during the course of fishing they accidentally strayed into Qatari waters resulting in the coast guard officials shoot at them.”

However, when contacted by Doha News today, the Indian embassy representative insisted that Thangaraj died from the impact of the boat accident.

Kumar added:

“We are a diplomatic mission. We do not investigate these matters on our own, nor do we carry out post mortems. This is the forensic report that we’ve received from the Qatari government, and that is what we’re going by.”

Kumar also said that he had seen the body of the deceased, and, to his knowledge, had observed no evidence of a gunshot. “It was internal injuries, which do not present themselves on the body.”

Thangaraj is survived by his wife and children, who recently received Rs 5 lakh (US$8,100) from a former Tamil Nadu government official’s relief fund.

Thoughts?

21 COMMENTS

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Sminto Antony [sAm]
6 years ago

Cause of death = KILLED!

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

Haha, as if the Indian embassy would help indian citizens. They just want to make money out of them and keep their qatari hosts happy.

It would be pretty obvious of he had been shot but neither the Indian embassy or the Indian government care about one poor dead indian.

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago

He truly was worth more dead than alive. At the going rate here and the rest of the Gulf that’s about 5-7 yrs pay. Doubt the truth will ever come out. OK he wasn’t shot. Unless there is some extenuating circumstances why would a powerful Coast Guard boat, capable of actually ramming a boat, that can probably do 50 mph feel the need to ram a fishing dowel that goes maybe 5 mph and made of wood? I could tie off my sailboat to, and board, the dowel with no problem.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

Yep, as he is dead everyone gets their cut of the payout…..

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

i think from the previous article it says they were rammed by accident as it was at night and visibility was poor. its not hard to believe we drive boats as badly as we do cars 😛

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago

So the CG boat has no radar to see exactly where that boat, or any other boat within many kilometers radius is? Doubtful. So the CG boat, knowing exactly where the fishing boat is, does not have powerful like the sun searchlights to see the boat from probably a kilometer away? Doubtful. No pun intended but this smells fishy.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

“So the CG boat has no radar to see exactly where that boat, or any other boat within many kilometers radius is? Doubtful.” I know what you mean; I feel the same every time I hear U.S. officials civilians killed by drones were just an accident 😉

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

deflect deflect deflect

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
6 years ago

Since his body is in India, it shouldn’t be difficult for those claiming he was shot to examine the body and prove so.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

You would think so, unless india does not have any experts at ‘looking at gun shot wounds’.

johnny wang
johnny wang
6 years ago

Sometimes the people the Indian Embassy represents must be wondering whether its embassy is working for them or whether its working to promote its own narrow interests and those of a few people close to its officials

The Reporter
The Reporter
6 years ago

If the poor guy died in Qatari waters then Qatar could carry out a post-mortem and reveal the truth. Crashed by accident sounds pretty unlikely as the coastguard must have known exactly where the boat was in the first place to know it was inside Qatari waters, and the coastguard boat would have had navigation lights, not to mention that the fishing boat couldn’t exactly get up to ram-speed.The family has received the body but no complaint or post-mortem? Why not? A very strange case indeed and yet again the lack of true transparency does no favours for Qatar’s reputation (or India’s for that matter)

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago

I’m going to go out on a limb and assume Chantelle D’mello is an Indian reporter. I will also go out on a limb an assume Shabina as an editor does hold her writers to a higher journalistic standard.

How difficult is it for a true journalist to get a hold of the writer of the article in the Indian paper to question whether or not the family of the deceased found any gunshot wound? I mean can we at least agree a gunshot wounds are not easy to disguise? I’m not claiming he was not shot, I don’t know, I’m just saying if he was it would be pretty obvious to his family.

Indian papers are known to exaggerate and embellish, just look at the Gulf Times or The Peninsula, where most journalists are Indians!

In a previous post on the same article, which by the why this article gives no such update to the previous on, the story, intentionally or not, is missing some hard facts. Chantelle keeps using the word “accidental” to describe their entry into Qatari waters! Just like I don’t know for a fact it was an intentional act to illegally fish in another country’s territorial water, you don’t know for a fact it was accidental.

But here are some facts to help you out with your story if you choose to run it a third time. First, were the Indian Bahrain-based fishermen licensed commercial fishermen or not? If so, then by law, both in Qatar and Bahrain, any commercial fishing convey, one boat or several, must at least have the local licensed fisherman with them at all times while at sea. Commercial fishing license in Bahrain and Qatar are not given to foreigners, locals only, who by law are required to be on every fishing trip.

Two, all commercial fishing boats are required to have a functioning GPS system on-board, which you can easily set up GPS parameter coordination on it which will warn you if you are steering into territorial waters of a different country. If I was leading fishing convey in Qatar or Bahrain I’m also required to visit the Qatari Coast Guard site at sea (or Bahrain in their case), give them my ID and fishing License and the ID’s of the entire fisherman with me.
They would insure I have everything from enough life jackets, to no-illegal fishing nets, to no underwater explosives, a radio/satellite phone and a functioning GPS with the correct coordinates of territorial waters incase I’ve gone too far..

The area they were in is a hot spot for drug smuggling, it is also an area which in the past has been used by Bahrain militants to smuggle weapons from Iran. Though Qatari Coast Guards are easy on local boys jet skiing into the pearl and drunktard expats at Safliyah island, they do not tolerate drug smugglers.

The fishermen, if rammed either did not stop when approached and asked to stop and instead tried to make a run for it back into Bahrain water leading the Qatari coast guard to ram them and cause the accidental
death. Or if they intercepted their path and the Bahrain boat attempted to ram them to make an escape, they got fired on.

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Yes a powerful coast guard boat rams a dowel that goes about 5 mph. I can swim faster than most dowels travel.

Yes I see many locals out on these fishing boats. Just saw Ali Al Fardan out the other day. lol

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

You’re like the US Tea Party, where facts are fiction, and thoughts are unfiltered no matter how idiotic they may seem… as long as there is a belief that there is an applauding audience always giving you a standing ovation..

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

As always with you

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

It’s called a Dhow, not dowel; seeing as to how you cannot even get the name right, I’m not even going to bother asking where you came up with this 5 mph!

“I can swim faster than most dowels travel.” well then, why don’t we put that theory to the test; we’ll take you to the Doha port and see if you can do that. Should be fun to watch 😉

So then, I take it you’re against the Minute men from back home. You know, those good ol’ white boys patrolling the border with Mexico and shooting anyone who doesn’t look like them ^_-

desertCard
desertCard
6 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

Sorry but my typing was being auto corrected.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

They look a bit jewish to me…..

thedrizzle96
thedrizzle96
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Now that’s a comment, well phrased, logical in structure, evidence based, some of the armchair comment trolls could learn a lot from this. I don’t necessarily agree with the rhetoric you open with, but the rest was good, personally I don’t know how difficult it would be to ID gun shot wounds but it would theoretically be more difficult than one would assume in some cases

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Well put. There are so many holes in this story, quite literary it seems.

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