Indian High Commissioner to leave New Zealand after assault allegations

Indian High Commissioner to leave New Zealand after assault allegations

Indian High Commissioner in New Zealand is set to leave the country today after allegations that his wife had assaulted a staff member.

High Commissioner Ravi Thapar was formally recalled and a vehicle was seen this morning at his Wellington address, media reports here said today.

NZ Radio website said that Police were declined to interview both Thapar and his wife Sharmila.

Police said that the staff member who made the allegation of assault had returned to India in early May.

Police further said that the victim did not want to press charges. They had since made welfare checks with the man, who said he was fine and happy to be home.

The victim, believed to be a chef, had walked 20 kms one night from the diplomat's residence to Wellington where he was found by member of a public in a distress state.

He was then taken to police station and later spent several nights at Wellington Night Shelter. He alleged that he was kept in slavery and was assaulted by Sharmila.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said it is aware Thapar is preparing to leave New Zealand.

"MFAT was aware a staff member raised with New Zealand police concerns about his treatment in the high commission," a spokesman confirmed to the New Zealand Herald.

"MFAT has been advised the individual concerned elected not to take the matter further. That staff member had independent legal representation and decided to return to India."

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