French woman held with drugs deported

Silence prevails over Alliance Francaise in Sector 36 after the arrest of its director,46-year-old Isabelle Paschal,for possessing 250 grams of charas in February this year.

Written by Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published: March 11, 2009 11:00 pm

Alliance Francaise director was on way to Kullu when caught with 250 g charas

Silence prevails over Alliance Francaise in Sector 36 after the arrest of its director,46-year-old Isabelle Paschal,for possessing 250 grams of charas in February this year. She has been deported back to France after she was bailed out from a two-day remand with the Kullu police. She has been booked under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.

According to the police,Isabelle was travelling with the contraband in a bus from Chandigarh to Kullu on February 22. A police party at Bajaura checkpost on the Manali-Chandigarh National Highway stopped the bus for inspection. Recovering the drug from her possession,Isabelle was apprehended for questioning.

The Kullu District Superintendent of Police K K Indoria said they have sent the contraband to the Forensic Science Laboratory for examination and are awaiting the report. “We have asked the laboratory to submit the report as soon as possible. It is a sensitive matter and we are keeping all aspects in view while investigating the matter,” he said.

Sources said Isabelle revealed her identity to the police after she was arrested as a technical staff of the French Embassy. The police followed the procedure and informed the Ministry of External Affairs following which French officials reached Kullu and got her released on bail. The SP added that the Alliance Francaise director would have to face a trial before the Special Judge (NDPS),Kullu.

Isabelle had joined the center at Sector 36 in 2007 and was in the country on a diplomatic visa. She was residing in Sector 37 with her husband,who had come to India on a tourist visa but managed to get a diplomatic visa last year. When contacted,her husband refused to speak with the media. “You can contact the French Embassy,” he said.

The staff at Alliance Francaise is equally shocked since the incident came to light. “We were not aware that the director has been deported. In fact,we were told that she had some urgent work in France and therefore had to rush back,” an employee told mediapersons.

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