Islamabad: Nearly six weeks after Pakistan promised consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav, Islamabad Thursday said it is in contact with India on the issue.
Pakistan Foreign Office said August 1 that the retired Indian Navy officer on death row will be granted consular access the next day. However, the meeting, which was scheduled for 3 pm August 2, did not materialise amid differences between India and Pakistan on the terms of the consular access to Jadhav.
Jadhav, 49, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of ‘espionage and terrorism’ in April 2017, following which India had moved the International Court of Justice (ICJ), seeking a stay on his death sentence and further remedies.
Addressing a weekly media briefing here, Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal said Pakistan and India were in contact on the ‘issue of granting consular access’ to Jadhav.
July 17, the ICJ ordered Pakistan to undertake an ‘effective review and reconsideration’ of the conviction and sentence of Jadhav and also to grant consular access to India without further delay.
One of the conditions put by Pakistan reportedly was the presence of a Pakistani official when Jadhav is allowed to meet Indian officials as part of the consular access.
India did not agree to the condition, making clear its position that the consular access must be ‘unimpeded’ and should be in the light of the judgement by the ICJ.
Pakistan claims that its security forces arrested Jadhav from the restive Balochistan province March 3, 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran.
However, India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy.