Kulbhushan Jadhav, who is on a death row in Pakistan, met his wife, Chetona, and mother, Avanti at Pakistan Foreign Affairs Ministry office on Monday. The meeting lasted for about 30 minutes. Jadhav's family was accompanied by JP Singh, Deputy High Commissioner of India to the foreign office. Pakistan has denied consular access to Jadhav despite repeated requests by India.
Dawn News reported that officials said all arrangements are in place for the meeting between Kulbhushan Jadhav and his family. Sharpshooters have been deployed at the MOFA's sprawling building ahead of the meeting.
Pakistan Rangers, Anti-Terrorism squads and sharpshooters have been deployed at the rooftop of the building. Other than media and security personnel, no other traffic allowed in the area around Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Jadhav has been in the Pakistani jail since April over allegations of being an Indian spy. Jadhav's wife and mother arrived by a commercial flight and leave the same day. Jadhav will be meeting his wife and mother for the first time since he was arrested in 2016.
Pakistan Foreign Minister stated that the meeting was permitted as a humanitarian gesture, on the birthday of the Father of the nation, Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
Pakistan permits the meeting of wife and mother of Commander Jadhav with him, as a humanitarian gesture, on the birthday of the Father of the nation, Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.— Dr Mohammad Faisal (@ForeignOfficePk) December 25, 2017
Last week, the Pakistan High Commission had issued visas to Kulbhushan Jadhav's wife and mother to visit Islamabad to meet him. India had earlier refused to send wife of Kulbhushan Jadhav, alone to visit the Indian navy officer in Pakistan, requesting Islamabad to grant travel permit to his mother also. Pakistan in November said it is "considering" India's request to let Kulbhushan Jadhav's mother meet him, apart from his wife who has already received permission to visit the Indian death row prisoner.
Visuals from Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Islamabad; Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav's wife and mother will meet him here, today pic.twitter.com/umaeALrtvr— ANI (@ANI) December 25, 2017
Pakistan had repeatedly denied India consular access to Jadhav on the ground that it was not applicable in cases related to spies. It said that Jadhav is not an ordinary person as he had entered the country with the intent of spying and carrying out sabotage activities.
Pakistan claimed Jadhav alias Hussein Mubarak Patel was arrested from its restive Balochistan province on March 3 in 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran. India, however, maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Indian Navy.
(With agency inputs)