Remains of Indians killed by IS in Iraq to reach home today

One of them escaped by posing as a Muslim from Bangladesh, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had said in a statement in Rajya Sabha. The DNA of one identified as Raju Yadav could not be fully matched.

Minister of State for External Affairs General VK Singh (retd) left for Mosul on Sunday to bring back the mortal remains of the 39 Indians who were killed in the war-torn country.

"They are our children we have been waiting for them for last four years", said Gurpinder Kaur, whose brother was among the youth killed in Iraq. Of the 39 Indians killed, 27 belonged to Punjab.

He said that the Union Government would be in league with the State Government to extend every possible assistance to the bereaved families.

"When the remains came to us, they were just skeletons, only bones. The government of India did its best to know about the missing Indians", Singh told reporters in Amritsar.

The victims were mostly from poor families in Punjab and were employed by a construction company in Mosul when they were abducted by extremists.

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As bodies of five people killed in Iraq reached Bihar's Siwan in the wee hours of Tuesday, families of two of them refused to accept the bodies, while demanding financial assistance from the state government.

Gen Singh also appealed that coffins should not be opened.

"Once the embassy had been informed about them, they can not say that they did not have a record".

Asked how they were killed, Singh, a former army chief, said that some of the persons were killed by bullets. A government campaign, backed by the US-led global coalition, was launched in 2016 to retake IS-held regions, managing to retake all havens, most notably the city of Mosul, the group's previously proclaimed capital.

He also accused the central government of discriminating against the residents of Punjab.

He triggered a controversy by saying that providing jobs and compensations to families of the deceased was not like distributing biscuits or a game of football.

  • Adam Floyd