Goa MP Shantaram Naik on Tuesday urged External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to protect the interests of the 6.5 lakh Indians in Qatar, which is facing a crisis after being isolated by other Gulf countries. Of the 6.5 lakh, some 10,000 are Goans. “In view of a serious situation developing in Qatar, India has to use diplomatic channels with Qatar in the interest of the Indian population there,” wrote Naik, Goa’s lone Rajya Sabha MP, said in a letter to Sushma Swaraj. “I have asked Sushma Swaraj to protect the interests of 6.5 lakh Indians, including 10,000 Goans, living and doing business in Qatar,” Naik told IANS. “People from India, particularly from Goa, have been of immense help in boosting the economy of Gulf countries including Qatar. People from Goa have been opting for jobs in Gulf countries for several decades, and it is the duty of the Indian government to monitor the interests of the Indian population,” Naik wrote. On Monday, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya, the UAE and the Maldives severed diplomatic, civil aviation and shipping ties with Qatar, accusing it supporting terrorism. Qatar denied the allegations.