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Captain Saurabh Vashisht, one of the eight imprisoned Indian Navy personnel released by Qatar following India’s diplomatic efforts, and his father have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to convey their heartfelt thanks and laud his leadership.

Vashisht said his heart is brimming with appreciation and reverence, as he praised Modi for his unwavering support and tireless efforts during one of the most challenging phases of his life, officials noted on Wednesday.

He said in the letter to the prime minister that, “In the face of seemingly insurmountable odds, you emerged as a steadfast beacon of hope and resilience, transcending the realms of politics to embody a guiding force of unparalleled significance.” He added, “Your solemn vow that no Indian would be left behind resonated deeply within our spirits, and time and again, you have demonstrated the profound sincerity of that commitment.” All eight officials were given the capital punishment by Qatar on espionage charges which was later committed.

However, India’s persistent intervention ensured their release in February and they returned home.

Vashisht said that in his solitary confinement in a Qatar prison, he was sustained by the hope that no stone will be left unturned to ensure his release as he observed the prime minister’s major diplomatic engagements such as being the State guest of the United States government, Chief Guest of Honour at Bastille’s Day parade in France and hosting the G20 summit, in India.

He said, “Witnessing your auspicious inauguration of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, I felt that our Lord Ram was also blessing us to attain our freedom. I remain eternally indebted to you for restoring our freedom, for the unwavering advocacy you extended to our plight, and for safeguarding the welfare of our families during our protracted separation.” Modi’s resolute commitment to the well-being of every Indian, irrespective of circumstance, evokes profound admiration and reverence, he said, praising him for exemplifying the true essence of leadership and empathy.

Officials said Captain Vashisht’s father Wing Commander Rajinder Kumar Vashisht (Retired) also praised and thanked PM Modi for the return of his son.

“In this agonising saga spanning over 18 months, you emerged as our rock, our unwavering pillar of hope. At 86 years of age, I find myself extremely overwhelmed with gratitude for your relentless efforts in bringing my son back from the brink of despair,” he said.

He said in his decades of life, he has traversed through changing times and eras, witnessed myriad leaders, yet none have radiated the “unwavering compassion, foresightedness, and devotion to our nation and its citizens, as you have”.

“Under your leadership, India has blossomed into a beacon of hope, reminiscent of the fabled Ram Rajya,” he added, while also praising his efforts for the safety of those trapped in a tunnel that collapsed in Uttarakhand last year.

“The depth of our gratitude knows no bounds for the extraordinary efforts and unwavering determination displayed to ensure that no Indian is left behind. Throughout my son’s confinement, I often reiterated the phrase ‘Modi Hai to Mumkin Hai, and today I tell the world with immense pride the truth in these words,” he said.