India wants Jhadav’s meeting with his mother too

ISLAMABAD – In response to Pakistan’s offer to arrange a meeting between Indian convicted spy-terrorist Kulbhushan Jhadav with his wife, the Indian government has sought permission for his mother to also have a meeting with her son, government sources said.

On Saturday, the Foreign Office spokesman confirmed to the media that they have received the reply of Pakistan’s offer to India in connection with the meeting of Jhadav with his wife purely on humanitarian grounds.

The spokesman said that the government was carefully examining the letter received by the Foreign Office in reply to the offer extended to Indian External Affairs Ministry and would furnish reply accordingly.

The sources said that India was reluctant to send Jhadav’s wife and wanted to also have the permission of a meeting of his mother with him because she also has the right to see her son.

Islamabad on Wednesday last sent an official communication to India offering a meeting of Jhadav with his wife.

When asked, the Foreign Office spokesman said that the meeting would take place on Pakistani soil and there were no other motives than the offer being on humanitarian grounds.

Jhadav was arrested on March 3, 2016, in a combing operation against terrorists in Balochistan’s Mashkel area. Jhadav was involved in espionage and sabotage activities in Pakistan, the army had said.

A Field General Court Martial (FGCM) in April 2017 handed the Indian spy a death sentence after trial for involvement in espionage and sabotage activities in Karachi and Balochistan.

The convict was provided with a defending officer as per legal provisions, the army had stated. However, the UN’s top court on May 18 stopped Pakistan from executing the death penalty.

Rejecting Pakistan’s argument that the court did not have jurisdiction in the matter, the International Court of Justice reasoned it could hear the case because it involved, on the face of it, an alleged violation of one of the clauses of the Vienna Convention, which both Pakistan and India ascribe to and whose interpretation falls under its purview.

According to Times of India, a senior External Affairs Ministry official confirmed on Saturday that India has responded to Pakistan’s proposal allowing Jadhav to meet his wife on humanitarian grounds.

The confirmation of the Indian response came hours after Pakistan announced the receipt of the Indian letter, even as both sides prepared for the next date of the case in December at the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

 “We can confirm that the letter carrying our response to the Pakistani offer on the humanitarian gesture to Kulbhushan Jadhav has been sent. It is a sensitive matter for the family and the two countries,” said the Indian official, explaining that Delhi has taken note of the fact that Pakistan has kept the content of the letter confidential and so far has not revealed it to the media on the Pakistani side.

In another development on Saturday, an unscheduled hotline contact was made between Pakistani and Indian Director Generals Military Operations (DGMOs).

According to a statement of Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), during the hotline contact, the Indian army was conveyed that continued deliberate targeting of innocent civilians along the Line of Control (LoC) lately in Nezapir, Chirikot and Battal sectors are highly unprofessional and unethical.

It was also conveyed that such provocations also causing loss of innocent civilian lives are potentially dangerous to invoke an unbearable response.

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