No consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav: Is Pak raising strains with India?

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Strongly condemning Pakistan for not giving consular access to alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, defence experts on Tuesday said such decision was against international norms and conventions and alleged that Islamabad was deliberately dragging this case to heighten tensions with India.

Defence expert Qamar Agha said Pakistan court should be trusted as they have their allegiance towards the army.

“It’s against the international norms and conventions to refuse to grant consular access. Secondly, you know a good legal case was missing. India has a right for consular access. I think we should not trust the Pakistan court either as most judges of the court have allegiance towards Jamaat-e-Islami and judiciary is totally committed to army,” Agha told ANI.

Expressing similar views, defence expert Shankar Prasad said, “Pakistan is trying to heighten the level of tensions with India so that international community begins to feel that this is a flash point in South East Asia. Therefore, they need to intervene and mediate in talks.”

Yesterday, the Pakistan Army ruled out consular access to Jadhav, saying he was not eligible for it as per the laws.

“Kulbhushan is not eligible for consular access nor will be granted consular access,” said Pakistan Armed Forces spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor.

He alleged that Jadhav, caught on anti-state activities, was trialled under court martial.

“This was purely an act by the Army to which the Army as an institution said we will not compromise on his sentence,” he said.

Major General Ghafoor said Jadhav’s death sentence process would move ahead as per the law, adding it would go in the applet court and the army shall wait for the verdict.

Jadhav was awarded the death penalty on April 10 in an unprecedented decision that sparked a diplomatic spat between the two hostile neighbours.

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