Thursday 22 March 2018

Fears for Dubliner missing in India

CONCERN is growing about a Dubliner reported missing in India for more than a month.

Journalist Jonathan Spollen (28) from Ranelagh was last seen in Rishikesh in northern India and no one has seen or heard from him since February 3.

His family have appealed for help in finding him, and his mother, Lynda Spollen, said Jonathan had lived overseas for a number of years and had always been good at keeping in touch.

"We are 75pc confident that he may still be in the Rishikesh area and we don't think he has left the country," she said in an interview.

Friends who had seen her son shortly before he went missing had commented on the fact that he had lost weight, she said.

Jonathan was planning to come to Ireland before his visa expired and had said that he might take a trek before he left.

"Our concern is that he may have picked up a virus of some kind while trekking because he maybe wasn't as fit as he thought he was. We are worried that something may have befallen him," she said.

The freelance writer and editor had been based in Hong Kong working for the International Herald Tribune until recently and was last known to be in Rishikesh, in the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand.

Before going to India last November, Mr Spollen had been travelling around Nepal.


He had intended to leave India before the February 21 expiry of his visa.

His father, David Green, has travelled to India to join in the search for him.

His mother said Jonathan had originally wanted to stay in the country for a while and travel from the south to the north but was only able to obtain a three-month visa.

As a journalist, the last thing he would have wanted to do was overstay in India "because he wouldn't have wanted blots on his copybook".

His intention would always have been to try to get out in time rather than overstay, she added.

The Department of Foreign Affairs is providing consular assistance to the family. Anyone with information about Jonathan should contact Ms Spollen at lyndaspollen@eircom.net. A Twitter search campaign has also been set up.


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