Maldivian man alleges beating in Indian prison after attempting to export peacock feathers

A Maldivian man arrested in Trivandrum, India for attempting to take a bag of peacock feathers back to Maldives has alleged he was beaten in prison, local media reported.

Ahmed Rufwaan Ali, 23, was arrested at Trivandrum Airport in December 2012 before spending 13 days in an Indian prison.

Speaking to media on his arrival back into Male’ yesterday (January 26), Ali alleged that officers in the prison tortured him due to his refusal to “subject himself to their instructions”, Sun Online reported.

Rufwaan subsequently clarified that he had been “beaten” in custody.

“Using the word ‘torture’ insinuates that I was exposed to extreme violent treatment which was not the case. It is also the ‘cultural’ language barrier that the Dhivehi language consists of limited vocabulary which when translated to English, can fit to a variety of synonyms,” he said, in a subsequent statement.

Rufwaan said he had been asked by reporters as to whether he was beaten in custody, to which he “regretfully responded, “It is a jail after all, and we will get beaten. Yes I was beaten. The rules of the officers there is that, once jailed we have to beg for mercy at their feet. I refused to do that, which is why I got the beating.”

Ali blamed the Maldivian consulate in India for the way he was treated in prison, claiming that Indian authorities had been about to release him before the Maldivian Consulate “communicated to Indian Customs authorities in an inappropriate manner”.

He also claimed the Maldivian consulate in India did not help to  bail him out of prison, and instead he had to rely on his family for the money.

“I first paid 25,000 rupees, and then 10,000 rupees as fine. All the help I got came from my family. The consulate there did not concern itself with me,” Ali was quoted as saying in local media.

Ali claimed that he was not aware of the ban on buying and selling peacock feathers, adding that he was unaware if the feathers were fake or not, according to local media.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Abdul Samad Abdulla was not responding to calls from Minivan News at time of press.

Clarification: Initial reports in local media quoted Rufwaan as saying he had been “tortured” in custody. Rufwaan subsequently issued a statement claiming he had been mistranslated and that he was in fact only “beaten”.


11 thoughts on “Maldivian man alleges beating in Indian prison after attempting to export peacock feathers”

  1. Is this news? The stupid man was breaking Indian law by exporting peacock feathers (the peacock is our national bird and trade and export of feathers and body parts is banned) and was punished according to our laws......he should thank his lucky stars he was not arrested in Saudi Arabia......they would have locked him up and thrown away the key.
    Customs officials in India should thoroughly frisk all Maldivians for contraband at departure, especially for drugs.

  2. Peacock feathers are dangerous materials (in the category of plutonium) that can threaten India's global position and its role as a largest democracy with the best human rights.

    How? Just read Kamasutra.

  3. Missing part of this news:

    When contacted, the Consulate's First Secretary Mr. Mohamed Faruhad denied the allegations made by Ruffan and stated that the Consulate received the news of Ruffan's arrest from his family.

    The Consulate immediately sent an Attach'e to the airport and checked Ruffan's condition who was under arrest even at that time.

    ''The Consulate then assisted the family on hiring a lawyer and explained the normal court procedures to the family. Also the Consulate informed the family that the Mission can't get involved directly in the matter as Ruffan was arrested on charges of a criminal offense.''

    ''The Consulate watched closely the condition of Ruffan while he was in prison and when requested immediately provided a document in order to assist speed up the court procedures.''

    The Consulate's First Secretary (Charge' d' Affaires):
    ''I met Ruffan on his release and Ruffan told me that he was never tortured or harmed in prison. But Ruffan did say that he had difficulties with sleep and he wasn't happy with the food served in prison. I am very shocked that he (Ruffan) told a different story to the local media''.

  4. Any Indian caught trying to export turtle shell from Maldives would have faced a worse senario.

  5. Ignorance of law is not an excuse form prosecution.However it is in interest of Justice to take such accidental errors linently.
    This young man should have been treated humanly and as an Indian,I would like to opologise to him for any mistreatment.
    Indians should stand up for Human rights of everyone INCLUDING PRISONERS.This is expected from any civic society.However Maldivians should also respect the rights of Immigrants and workers be they Indians or whites.

  6. @Rationale, you dont have to kill a peacock to take one of its feathers, but youll more or less kill a turtle, use your brain retard

  7. Tit for tat. Both ways.

    If they treat us bad, we should too. That is the religious model too.

    But what about the slavery we make of the Indians here?

  8. There is a limit to politicisation !

    What will the Maldivian Police do, if my foreigner friends bathes in Male' beach on a Bikini? If he/she brings in a Buddha statue or watch pornography and say that he/she didnot know the rules here?

    We have expats in jail for 2 years on charges that porno clips from internet were found in his computer.

    This was a case of smuggling of banned article, of Peacock feather. Peacock is national bird in India. The minimum punishment is 3-6 years. And this man was let of in 11 days only. And he makes stories to sensationalize.

    Who is behind the 'reception' at airport? Who has paid for the banners. T-shirts and all?

    Is he somebody who was imprisoned for a crime or is the Captain of Maldives Football team winning world cup?

  9. lol.Lucky for him that his investigation was not carried out by encounter specialist Arjun Ranawat and Hyder Ali!

  10. Arrested for carrying peacock feathers? Are people insane in this part of the world? It's as stupid as arresting people over porno, wearing bikini's, enjoying freedom as an orphan, farting in a temple or mosk, or any other harmless act.

    Leave people alone if they don't harm anyone, start focusing on murder and rape cases instead.


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