File photo of Kulbhushan Jadhav. Photograph:( Others )
India has been demanding consular access for Jadhav for the last three years but Pakistan had repeatedly denied it following his conviction by a military court on charges of espionage after a sham trial.
Indian chargé d'affaires Gaurav Ahluwalia held a two-hour meeting with Kulbhushan Jadhav at a sub-jail in Pakistan after the Indian national was granted consular access which has been one of the most prickly issues between India and Pakistan.
India has been demanding consular access to Jadhav for the last three years but Pakistan had repeatedly denied it following his conviction by a military court on charges of espionage after a sham trial.
Before the meeting, Ahluwalia was quoted as saying ''We hope Pakistan will ensure right atmosphere so that the meeting is free, fair, meaningful and effective in keeping with the letter and spirit of the Internation Court of Justice (ICJ) orders''.
India went to the ICJ which ruled with a majority of 15-1 that Pakistan should grant consular access.
In its verdict On July 17, President of the International Court of Justice Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf said,"Islamic Republic of Pakistan is under an obligation to inform Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav without further delay of his rights and to provide Indian consular officers access to him in accordance with Article 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations"
The Court declared that Pakistan is under an obligation to inform Jadhav without further "delay of his rights."
Indian Deputy High Commissioner exits from @ForeignOfficePk after meeting #KulbhushanJadhav as #Pakistan gave #India his consular access in view of ICJ judgement. https://t.co/J6Hhzh2bw1 pic.twitter.com/daILt8Ie4c— Anas Mallick (@AnasMallick) September 2, 2019
Following ICJ ruling, Pakistan had offered consular access to Jadhav in August but with caveats. It had stated that a Pakistani official will be present during the meeting between India's consular staff and Jadhav, and the entire meeting will be recorded by a CCTV camera.
India had rejected that offer stating it was against the Vienna Convention, which guarantees unimpeded consular access.
This is the second time Pakistan had made the offer and agreed to do so in line with the Vienna conventions on consular relations. However, India approached the offer with caution as when Jadhav's mother and wife were allowed to meet him, it was done with a glass screen between them. And later the entire episode was used by Pakistan for propaganda.
It's still not clear if any Pakistani diplomat was present in the room when the meet happened.
India maintains that Jadhav is a retired naval officer, who was illegally abducted by Pakistan from Iran, where he was running a business.
This is the first time that 49-year-old has been granted consular access.