An extraordinary six-week-old saga involving allegations of domestic violence against an Indian diplomat in London looks set to run after senior diplomatic sources in London said the Indian High Commission is unaware of his wife’s whereabouts.
Anil Verma, an IAS officer who handles economic and commercial affairs at the Indian High Commission in London, is expected to return “soon” to India along with his family on the orders of the External Affairs Ministry, which has taken a “serious view” of his marital dispute that degenerated into violence last month.
But sources told HT that they had no idea where Verma’s wife Paromita was, but were aware of newspaper reports that she had requested British authorities to be allowed to stay back.
“Anil Verma has been transferred back with his family, but the reality is that his family is not with him. We don’t know where she is and we will request the concerned authorities to help us in this regard,” the sources said.
“Marital disputes are not unknown in the diplomat service, but I’ve never come across one that is so serious that one of the party actually wants to stay on,” a senior diplomat said requesting anonymity.
Paramita has been living in an undisclosed address after fleeing Anil’s official residence earlier this month along with the Vermas’ two sons.
The dispute between Anil and Paramita, serious enough to warrant statements by India and Britain, was detailed Wednesday in a seven-page note put out by the Indian High Commission.
According to the mission, Paramita and Anil fought over a Christmas tree on December 11.
The press note quoted Paromita as saying she was slapped. “This resulted in bleeding from her nose due to damage to tissues in the nose.” Neighbours called police and ambulance after Paromita ran out of the house.
After the incident the British foreign office last week urged New Delhi to waive Anil’s diplomatic immunity.