In a response to queries about Consular access being granted to Kulbhushan Jadhav earlier on Monday, the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Raveesh Kumar, stated that prima facie, the former was under extreme pressure from Pakistan to parrot a false narrative. Kumar said that this aimed to bolster Pakistan's untenable claims. However, he also noted that MEA awaited a comprehensive report of the meeting between Gaurav Ahluwalia, the Charge d' Affaires at the Indian High Commission in Islamabad, and Kulbhushan Jadhav. Kumar contended that they would be able to determine whether the meeting conformed to International Court of Justice (ICJ) directives only after examining the report.
MEA's official spokesperson reiterated that Monday's meeting was a binding obligation on the part of Pakistan. He also mentioned the fact that the judicial process to convict and sentence Jadhav to death was a farcical one. Kumar added that External Affairs Minister S.Jaishankar had spoken to Jadhav's mother and apprised her of the latest developments. He issued a commitment that the Government would make every possible effort to secure justice for Jadhav and bring him back to India safely.
Kulbhushan Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy Officer running a legitimate business in Iran was abducted from near the Chabahar port by Pakistan, following which he was portrayed as an Indian spy. The news of his capture came to the fore after Pakistan released a hatchet-job of a 'confession' video in March, 2016. Despite all possible attempts, Pakistan refused to allow Consular access to Jadhav, which was a clear violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, 1963.
While Jadhav was tried for espionage and terrorism and sentenced to death by a sham Military Court in Pakistan in April 2017, India moved the ICJ barely weeks later for denial of Consular access and to challenge the death sentence. In December 2017, Pakistan gave his wife and mother access to meet him. But, in the bargain, they were severely humilated by sections of the media in Pakistan and the authorities. After due deliberation, ICJ ruled in India's favour on July 17 this year and directed Pakistan to stay Jadhav's sentence and grant India consular access to him.