India again seeks consular access to Jadhav

Islamabad has not informed New Delhi about Jadhav’s physical well being and location

Updated - November 29, 2021 01:16 pm IST

Published - April 20, 2017 05:20 pm IST - New Delhi

former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav who has been sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of 'espionage'.

former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav who has been sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of 'espionage'.

India has made a fifteenth request to Pakistan for consular access to the former Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav.

A spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) confirmed that the request for consular access and the process of appeal regarding the case was made on Wednesday, even as he maintained that Pakistan has not informed India about Mr. Jadhav’s physical well being and location.

“We would like to know officially, what are the options in terms of the process of appeals and how that can be exercised [in Pakistan],” said spokesperson Gopal Baglay, revealing the demands that India had communicated to Islamabad during the meeting with the Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan in Delhi. However, he maintained that Mr. Jadhav’s health and well being were a cause of worry for India.

‘No information’

“We have no information about where is Kulbhushanji in Pakistan. His health and condition are matters of deep worry for us. Including yesterday, we have sought consular access for fifteen times,” said Mr. Baglay, explaining that the consular meeting is necessary to find out about Mr. Jadhav’s health as it is a normal practice in cases of all bilateral prisoners. Consular access, he said, was necessary also to find out Mr. Jadhav’s opinion as he has been accused of special allegations, that are baseless.

Details of proceedings

“As Pakistan has been claiming of legal proceedings against Mr. Jadhav and we would also like to see what are the details of the proceedings from the Government of Pakistan,” Mr. Baglay said.

This presentation happened a day after Pakistan postponed a meeting between Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale and Foreign Secretary of Pakistan Tehmina Janjua. The meeting was postponed at the last moment after Indian officials held a meeting in Delhi with the Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan in Delhi. Sources, however, maintained that the government is currently exploring several options about freeing Mr. Jadhav.

Pakistan’s charges

The MEA downplayed Pakistani allegations that its nationals in Indian custody have been denied of consular access. The spokesperson pointed out that there are many Pakistani prisoners in Indian custody who have committed serious crimes against the Indian state but it is not yet known if Pakistan has availed the option of consular access to them.

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