Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav, an alleged India spy, was sentenced to death by a military court in Pakistan today. According to a report by Pakistan-based Dawn.com, security experts of the country have termed this decision “unprecedented” and aimed at sending a “strong message to India and foreign intelligencies.” Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti told Dawn that death sentence to Jadhav was a “good decision” and “there are foreign elements involved in terrorist activities in Balochistan.”
The news of death sentence to Jadhav was shared on Twitter by Pakistan Armed Forces spokespersons, Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor. “Indian R&AW agent #Kalbushan awarded death sentence through FGCM by Pakistan Army for espionage and sabotage activities against Pakistan,” Ghafoor tweeted.
Here are five things you should know about Kulbhushan Jadhav and the case against him:
Who is Kulbhushan Jadhav — what India and Pakistan say about him?
Pakistan calls Kulbhushan Jadhav a Raw agent and a former Indian naval officer. According to Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Jadhav also has another name — Hussein Mubarak Patel.
India has acknowledged that Jadhav is a retired Indian Navy officer. However, he is not connected to the Indian government in any way.
India would soon lodge an official protest against the death sentence. The Indian government had no prior information of the trial against Jadhav. India has accused Pakistan of trying Jadhav in “secret” to sentence him to death.
Watch confession of Kulbhushan Jadhav shared by Pakistan
When and how was Kulbhushan Jadhav arrested?
According to ISPR, Jadhav was arrested on March 3, 2016, during a counterintelligence operation from Mashkel in Balochistan for his involvement in “espionage and sabotage activities against Pakistan.” Jadhav was tried under the Field General Court Martial (FGCM) under Pakistan Army Act and awarded death sentence.
What was Kulbhushan Jadhav’s alleged confession to Pakistan?
During the trial, Jadhav allegedly confessed that he was “tasked by RAW to plan, coordinate and organize espionage/sabotage activities aiming to destabilize and wage war against Pakistan by impeding the efforts of Law Enforcement Agencies for restoring peace in Balochistan and Karachi.”
— Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor (@OfficialDGISPR) April 10, 2017
How Pakistani experts view arrest and death sentence to Jadhav?
Following the arrest of Jadhav, then ISPR head Lt Gen Asim Bajwa had said that the India’s goal was to disrupt the “development of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)” and Gwadar port was his “special target”. Bajwa had termed Jadhav’s activities as “state-sponsored terrorism” and a “clearer evidence of Indian interference in Pakistan”, according to Dawn.
Pakistani defense analyst Ikram Sehgal told Dawn that it was “correct” to give death sentence to Jadhav.
How the death sentence to Jadhav would impact India-Pakistan relations
India has denied that Jadhav was connected to the Indian government. At a time when the relation between India and Pakistan has touched a new low, the death sentence to Jadhav will further ruin the ties between the countries. Pakistan continues to sponsor terrorism in India and separatism in Jammu and Kashmir. By giving death sentence to Jadhav, the country is trying to prove India’s claims on Pakistan-sponsored terrorism false and present a counter-narrative to the world. The move, however, may backfire against Pakistan, which has given a free run to terrorists like Hafiz Saeed on its land.