India’s Old Guard

Born in Indian state of Maharashtra, Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav is a serving officer in the Indian Navy, who has been gathering intelligence for Indian agencies and causing havoc through sponsored terrorist activities in Pakistan.

As per his confession, “he had commenced intelligence operations in 2003, and established a business in Chahbahar, Iran, where he was able to go undetected and visit Karachi in 2003 and 2004…He was picked up by Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing at the end of 2013, and has been directing various subversive activities in Karachi and Balochistan.”He would regularly hold meetings with Baloch insurgents in order to carry out activities pertaining to criminal nature. He was arrested by Pakistani authorities on March 03, 2016, when he tried to infiltrate in Pakistan through Saravan border in Iran. After proving Jadhav’s involvement in terrorist activities in Pakistan, he was sentenced to death on April 10, 2017 by Field General Court Martial trial (FGCM).

India, however, denied acknowledging Jadhav as their spy at International Court of Justice (ICJ) in its attempt to save him from execution. Attorney General of Pakistan Anwar Mansoor Khan apprised 15-judge ICJ bench that “Jadhav was an Indian spy sent to Balochistan to destabilise the country…His unlawful activities were directed at creating anarchy in Pakistan and particularly targeted the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.”

While respecting the decision of ICJ, Pakistan informed Indian authorities that Jadhav could be granted Consular access on 02 August 2019. “We have received a proposal from Pakistan. We are evaluating the proposal in the light of [the] ICJ judgement, “Economic Times quoted Indian foreign ministry spokesman Raveesh Kumar. According to Foreign Office of Pakistan’s announcement “pursuant to the ICJ judgement, Jadhav had been informed of his rights under Article 36, Paragraph 1(b) of the Vienna Conven­tion on Consular Relations.”Jahdav was provided Consular access second time as per the direction of  ICJ as well. Previously, Pakistan also permitted Jahdav’s family to meet him as a human gesture. In sum, Pakistan has been making all out efforts not to drift from legal procedures as per international norms.

Unfortunately, Indian efforts to twist the facts at ICJ hearings only aim at creating a ‘political theater’ for coercing Pakistan and is nothing more than a blatant lie. Indian embarrassment and reluctance to pursue Jahdav’s case cannot be overshadowed by fake narratives and abandonment of their citizen, who happens to be a Commissioned naval officer too. At this point of time, it matters less what the final ICJ decision regarding Jadhav’s fate will be as his arrest and confession has helped Pakistan in proving Indian inflicted terrorism in its territory. Jhadav has confessed of his crimes and has pleaded to all charges. Through Jahdav’s arrest, Indian designs to sabotage China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) have also been exposed.

India’s involvement, though, in Pakistan’s domestic affairs is a decade old story e.g. the dismemberment of Pakistan in 1971 by India, which was acknowledged by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his visit to Bangladesh in June 2015. India is doing the same in Balochistan. Indian history of spying is old and is inspired by Arthashastra, which advises coercion in order to control neighbouring states. It seems that India still believes in Kautilya’s approach in resolving lingering territorial disputes through instigating territorial instability in the enemy state.

International law strongly condemns intervention by a state into another’s territory. Friendly Relations Declaration presents an entire section “on the principle concerning the duties of a state not to interfere in the matters as within the domestic jurisdiction of another state, in accordance with the UN Charter.” In 1965, similarly, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a Declaration on the Inadmissibility of the Intervention and Interference in the Domestic Affairs of States (UNGA resolution 2131 (XX) 1965).

India’s concerns on CPEC project together with Indo-Pak enmity is the key source of India’s unlawful approach towards Pakistan. As India cannot bear Pakistani progress, Pakistan has to keep a vigilant eye and ensure successful operationalization of CPEC projects. As India also has strong presence in Pakistan’s neighbourhood, international community has to take notice of India destabilizing activities in the region. India cannot be allowed to violate international law and UN Charter time and again.