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Home > News > PTI

India convinces Swiss prez of its sincere efforts to nab man who raped diplomat

Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi | November 11, 2003 22:59 IST

India went to great lengths to ensure that President Pascal Couchepin's six-day official visit passed off without any glitches, especially in view of the lack of any visible progress (till Tuesday morning) in the investigation into the rape of a
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In a deviation from the norm, before Couchepin landed in the capital, the Indian government got the investigation officer, Deputy Commissioner of Police (South District) Vivek Gogia, to personally apprise Swiss ambassador Walter B Gyger about the progress in the probe.

The Swiss had been outraged at the rape, but it was the lack of any visible progress in the probe that made things worse. Hosting Couchepin at such a point in time was a major challenge for the political leadership.

However, the government's initiative seems to have paid off.

After Gyger briefed him about the Indian government's efforts, President Couchepin told reporters in Bangalore that he had full faith in the Indian judiciary's ability to punish the guilty.

In their meetings with President Couchepin, President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani briefed him about the Delhi's police's exhaustive efforts to track down the culprits.

On Tuesday, Couchepin left Delhi for Mumbai on his way back to Switzerland in a much better frame of mind convinced that India is doing everything in its power to track down the two culprits.

"We are satisfied that the Indian government is doing everything to track down the criminals (who assaulted the Swiss diplomat). We have realised that it is a tough job. In fact, the Delhi police is doing a good job," the deputy head of mission in the Swiss embassy Lorenzo Amberg told rediff.com on Tuesday.

"There is no acrimony between us (India and Switzerland) over this sensitive issue although I must confess that we were extremely upset when the matter came to light," he added.

President Couchepin may have left the national capital but President Kalam, Prime Minister Vajpayee and Deputy Prime Minister Advani are taking a personal interest in the investigation leaving little breathing space for the Delhi police.

As part of the investigation, more than 6,000 people have been reportedly interrogated and numerous others short-listed for interrogation. The concerned policemen had been instructed to apprise the Swiss authorities about the progress in the investigation on a regular basis.

The Swiss diplomat has been cooperating with the investigation.


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