The Indian government on Wednesday submitted an appeal in the Pakistani appellate court on behalf of former Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav’s mother Avanti, PTI reported. The appeal starts the process to reverse his conviction as a spy. New Delhi also made yet another request for consular access to the former naval officer, who has been sentenced to death by Pakistan for alleged spying.
Indian High Commissioner in Islamabad Gautam Bambawale met Pakistan foreign secretary Tehmina Janjua and reiterated India’s demand. Delhi has also sought visas for Jadhav’s parents to visit him as well. Pakistani media later reported that Islamabad had denied India’s request.
Pakistan has time and again denied consular access to Jadhav over the past year. Delhi has also asked for a copy of the verdict and the charges against Jadhav, but Islamabad has not yet replied. Bambawale has met Janjua several times since Jadhav was sentenced to death by a military court on April 10, however, nothing much has come out of those meeting.
Jadhav was arrested in March 2016. Pakistan had accused him of having entered the country through Iran and helping Baloch separatists, while working for India’s intelligence agency, the Research and Analysis Wing. Jadhav was charged with terrorism, sabotage and violating the country’s Foreigner Act. After his arrest, the Pakistani Army had released what they claimed was a “confessional video”.
Delhi has maintained that it will treat Jadhav’s sentencing as murder if Islamabad goes ahead with the execution. “The way in which the verdict has been given by the [Pakistani] Army court is not transparent and not in accordance with bilateral relations between the two nations,” Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre had said.