Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former Indian Navy Officer, was sentenced to death by a military court of Pakistan last week on the ground of being a spy. The Indian Government has stated in defence that he is not a spy and Pakistan is violating the Geneva Convention by awarding death penalty to him. It will be considered as pre-meditated murder by our Government. The Indian Government has called off talks on maritime security which was scheduled to be held on April 17, 2017 as the Pakistan Government has defied all international norms by awarding death penalty to Jadhav.
The Pakistan Government has decided to submit a new memorandum for more evidence against Kulbhusan in the United Nations. According to the Pakistan media reports, the new evidence will be consisting of the video recordings of confessional statements by Jadhav in the court for his involvement in espionage and sabotage activities in Karachi and other places. The Indian High Commissioner has asked its Pakistani counterparts to give a copy of the chargesheet and judgement. The Indian officials has asked the Pakistan officials to give consular access to Jadhav. But he was denied the same as he was convicted on the grounds of espionage. The External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has already warned that if execution of punishment happens, then it will affect the bilateral relationship between the India and Pakistan and India can go out of the way to save Jadhav.
Jadhav was in Iran on a business trip. He was kidnapped and brought to Pakistan. A video was uploaded by Pakistan agencies of Bhushan where he confessed himself as a RAW agent. But his swollen face and other disturbances put a doubt on the video. A Indian Passport with Iranian visa was found from his possession. The question is why a spy will travel with valid travel documents? Now it seems that Pakistani agencies are trying to take revenge of the surgical attacks by the Indians on Pakistan army. Another important event is that the election of the National Assembly of Pakistan is going to be held next year. Nawaz Sharif might be trying to save his image by attacking the innocent Indians.
The India-Pak Joint Defence Committee for Prisoners (IPJDCP), a forum of lawyers from both the countries has petitioned before the Pakistan Supreme Court against the award. The Petition contains the prayer that the sentence should be set aside and a fair trial should be done in accordance with the procedure given in the Constitution of Pakistan and Bhushan should be given legal aid like a civilian. Concern has been expressed over the usage of the draconian law,” Official Secrets Act, 1923”, by both the countries in punishing the innocent people.
Now we can hope that Kulbhushan should get early relief. Indian Government is trying its best to do the same. It depends on whether the Pakistani officials cooperates or not as we have experience of cases like Sarabjit Singh.