Former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav sentenced to death in Pakistan

Khulbhushan Jadhav was arrested in March last year on charges of spying.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: April 12, 2017 10:47 am
A TV grab of Kulbhushan Jadhav and his passport. PTI

A former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on Monday, according to a press release issued by the ISPR. Paksitan claimed that he was arrested in March last year on charges of spying. He is accused by the Pakistan authorities of “waging war” against the state. He is facing charges of espionage and sabotage activities against Pakistan. Jadhav was tried through Field General Court Martial (FGCM) under under section 59 of Pakistan Army Act (PAA) 1952 and Section 3 of official Secret Act of 1923 and awarded death sentence.

Earlier, the Pakistan army released a video of Jadhav purportedly confessing that he was a R&AW agent deployed to destabilize the country’s efforts in restoring peace in Balochistan and Karachi. Indian Intelligence officials, however, pointed out several errors in the video testimony and said that Jadhav might have been coerced.  In the video, Jadhav was heard saying that he was recruited by the R&AW in 2013, ten years after he established a base in Iran’s Chabahar. He claims he was deputed by the Indian Navy to gather domestic intelligence after the Parliament attack in 2001.

India has acknowledged that Jadhav served with the navy but denied he has any connection with the government. “The individual has no link with government since his premature retirement from Indian Navy,” the External Affairs Ministry had said in a statement in March last year.

India had demanded Consular access to Jadhav, but Pakistan repeatedly denied Indian officials access to him. The ISPR statement, however, said Jadhav, alias Hussein Mubarak Patel, was “provided with defending officer as per legal provisions”.

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