ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani authorities say that the Indian government portraying Kulbushan Jadhav, condemned to death over his involvement in espionage and terrorist activities in Pakistan, as a common prisoner was an attempt on its part to belie the truth.
This assertion came in the wake of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs’ desire to cooperate with Pakistan on humanitarian matters including for the welfare of incarcerated nationals which included citizens and fishermen.
In a statement issued on Saturday Indian Ministry of External Affairs said, “India remains committed to addressing on priority all humanitarian matters with Pakistan, including those pertaining to prisoners and fishermen.”
The Indian government had also renewed its demand for full and earlier counselor access to Jadhav and another national, Hamid Nehal Ansari.
The Foreign Office’s spokesperson said, “India attempted to portray Jhadhav as a common prisoner to belie the reality.” “Jadhav was a spy sent to Pakistan for carrying out subversive activities. His activities have caused an irreparable loss to Pakistani citizens’ lives and properties,” he added.
The spokesperson reiterated Pakistan was committed to implementing the Consular Access Agreement between Pakistan and India, signed on 21 May 2008 in letter and spirit. A day before the two countries had exchanged lists of nationals incarcerated in each other’s prisons.
“This step is consistent with the provisions of the Consular Access Agreement between Pakistan and India, signed on 21 May 2008, under which both countries are required to exchange lists of prisoners in each other’s custody twice a year, on 1 January and 1 July, respectively, said the foreign office in a statement.
According to details, there are total 546 Indian nationals incarcerated in Pakistani jails, of which 52 are citizens while 494 fishermen.
Whereas, the Indian government also handed over a list of Pakistani inmates languishing in Indian jails to the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi according which there are total 341 Pakistani citizens in Indian jails, of which 263 are citizens while 78 fishermen who had veered into the Indian waters while fishing in the open sea. NNI