It is a proven fact that the State of Pakistan is both a terrorist sponsor as well as a terrorist State.
Throughout its miserable existence since 1947, successive governments of Pakistan have indulged in acts of terrorism against its own people (Baluchistan and NEFA), against India (repeated terror attacks), against the world (Attacks on WTC 9/11/ 2001, Bus bomb attacks in London 07/07/2005), to name a few.
Successive Pakistani regimes have committed and in many instances surpassed almost every crime that was committed by the Nazis in Europe during the World War II period. The Pakistani military has remained unaccountable for its human right violations and its disproportionate influence in that nation’s politics.
Under pressure from its military leadership, the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ceded significant constitutional and decision-making authority to the armed forces in 2015, particularly in the areas of national security, foreign policy, and human rights. Thereby; the Pakistani parliament passed a constitutional amendment allowing secret military courts to try terrorism suspects.
The military assumed control of the implementation of a national plan to address terrorism, largely without civilian oversight. It was also formally given membership in the Apex committees, provincial committees formed to coordinate local counterterrorism efforts and security.
One of the very first victims of this policy has been Indian National Hussein Mubarak Patel, whose former name was Kulbhushan Jadhav. Commander Jadhav is an Indian Navy Officer who retired from service in 2002 after being passed over for promotion. As a civilian, Jadhav started a trading business where he imported pistachios and bitumen from Iran and exported tractor and machinery parts. Around 2013 he formed a free zone company (FZC) in the Chabahar Port of Iran. At about the same time, he and his immediate family had converted to the Shia branch of Muslim religion; perhaps in a bid to ingrate himself with his clients in Iran who were predominantly Shia.
On 03 March 2016, Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran on the behest of the Pakistani ISI by the Sunni-Salafist mafia group Jaish Ul- Adil that is based out of Baluchistan. That the kidnap operation was sponsored by the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence is without doubt. Inconsistencies in the fabricated stories put forth by Pakistan can be ascertained from the fact that while Sarfaraz Bugti (Minister of Balochistan) has made public statements that Jadhav was captured in Chaman area of the Afghanistan border; Pakistani General Aseem Saleem Bajwa has stated that he was picked up from Saravan. These two cities are separated by 885 kilometers. So comes up the crucial query. Who is telling lies?
General Aseem Bajwa went on to claim that Jadhav was on a mission to sabotage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), target Gwadar and Karachi ports as targets and “create disharmony in Baluchistan”, against the Government of Pakistan. In other words, according to Bajwa’s fantasy; Jadhav as a spy was single –handedly going to destroy Pakistan.
Sarfaraz Bugti, on the other hand kept his accusations against Jadhav to a minimum; claiming that Jadhav was working for RAW and was in contact with Baloch separatists and terrorists fuelling sectarian violence in the Baluchistan province and the country of Pakistan.
That Jadhav had been kidnapped from Iran was confirmed by the German diplomat Dr. Gunter Mulack, who based his statement on information that was supposedly received through credible sources in the Western intelligence community.
Ambassador Mulack has a distinguished career as a diplomat of Germany and his last appointment, prior to retirement was as Ambassador of Germany to Pakistan (2005-08). Post retirement he is a Director in the German Orient Institute in Berlin. Therefore, it can be safely assumed that his personal credibility is sky-high as compared to that of Sarfaraz Bugti and Aseem Bajwa, combined.
The Pakistanis further went on to elaborately fabricate the story in an attempt to connect Jadav to one Haji Baloch, leader of a separatist movement in Baluchistan. This Haji Baloch is presumably the person known as ‘Haji Sahib’, who had been accused by Pakistan since 2015 of being the financer of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) as well as being nominated as the chief of Al-Qaeda in Pakistan.
To add spice to this earlier fabrication, the Pakistani Army declared on 12 April 2017 that they had taken into custody Haji Baloch aka Uzair Baloch; who they say, had been in contact with the alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav. This Uzair Baloch is a gangster from Lyari (a constituent town of the city of Karachi); and is reputed to have assets worth billions; spread across Dubai (UAE), Muscat and Iran.
Pakistan has not been able to explain exactly which Haji Baloch has been the local connection of Jadhav; is it Haji Baloch the Al-Qaeda master-mind or Haji Baloch the mafia gangster?
Since his arrest on March 03, 2016; Pakistan has been consistent in refusing consular access to Jadhav by the Indian officials. This adamant attitude adds to the suspicion that if Jadhav is allowed contact and conversation with Indian Government officials, the entire hare-brained plot of the ISI will unravel on a global scale.
On 10 April 2017, Kulbhushan Jadhav has been sentenced to death by a Pakistani Field General Court Marshal (FGCM) which in itself has no credibility since the Pakistani Military is known to frequently flout all rules of ‘due legal process’ including ignoring its own country’s laws, rules and regulations; despite local and international condemnation.
This illegally constituted FGCM is in direct violation of International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), to which Pakistan is a signatory.
Provisions of the Convention emphasize the need to protect the Right to Life and Liberty. Article 6(1) of the convention prevents arbitrary deprivation of life without following the due process of law. Article 7 states that no one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
Article 9 guarantees the right to life and security of person. As per this provision, no one shall be subject to arbitrary arrest or detention except in accordance with the procedure established by law.
In the present case, it is clearly seen that the rights guaranteed in the ICCPR are clearly violated. The self incriminating confession violates his Right under Article 14 of the convention. Further, there is no conclusive proof on the fairness of the trial in the martial court nor is there any evidence to prove that the accused Jadhav was given an opportunity to defend himself.
Furthermore; as per provisions of the Agreement on Consular Access between India & Pakistan signed on 21st May 2008, India is entitled to the right to consular access to Indian prisoners held captive in Pakistan. Pakistan is obliged to grant the Indian authorities access to meet Kulbhushan Jadav. This agreement is enforceable based on the legal principle, “Pacta Sunt Servanda” translated to “treaties shall be complied with”. State practice over the centuries has recognized the fundamental significance of pacta sunt servanda as a principle or rule of maintaining international relations. Pakistan has denied India consular access on request 16 times which clearly proves the violation of the agreement.
Pakistan’s breach of international law and Jadhav’s death sentence may be effectively challenged by recourse to the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Furthermore, any dispute arising with respect to the provisions of the VCCR can be heard in the ICJ by virtue of both India and Pakistan being parties to the Optional Protocol to the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes, 1963.
Since the names of the officers who comprised this FGCM, along-with the name of the officer who they claim defended Jadhav in this farcical yet deadly drama have been kept a secret by the Pakistan Army; the Government of India will have to take legal action on every international front, against the following Pakistani Army Officers for aiding and abetting the pre-meditated murder of an Indian national.
The Pakistani officials accused of pre-meditated conspiracy to murder should be:
- Mir Sarfaraz Bugti, s/o: Mir Ghulam Qadir Massoori Bugti; Minister of Baluchistan.
- Aseem Saleem Bajwa; parentage unknown, currently Lieutenant General, Pakistan Army
- Naveed Mukhtar; parentage unknown, currently Lieutenant General, Pakistan Army and Chief of Inter – Services Intelligence (ISI)
- Asif Ghafoor, parentage unknown, currently Major General, Pakistan Armed Forces.
- Qamar Javed Bajwa; parentage unknown, currently Chief of Army Staff, Pakistan Army.
The Pakistani military establishment has been consistently found to have violated all human rights in their various operations, be it through massacre and genocide in Baluchistan, North-East Frontier areas; or sponsored terrorist actions against India across the Kashmir borders.
Inside Pakistan itself, the military courts have held and are holding secret trials of civilians and have executed 85 people in 2016; without any oversight from civilian courts or with any regard to ‘due process of the law’.
- The consistent use of Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy law against religious minorities has victimized hundreds (mostly due to personal disputes against Sunni Muslims that pre-dominate the security forces) and 19 people are currently on death row for blasphemy.
- The media in Pakistan is under constant threat by intimidation to prevent their reporting and criticism of human rights violations by the Pakistani armed forces.
- The recent ‘Prevention of cyber crime law”, allows the Pakistan armed forces to censor online content and to criminalize internet users activities under a broad and extremely vague criteria. This law also sanctions the government (Army authorities) to access data of internet users without civilian judicial review or oversight.
- Forced conversions of women belonging to Hindu, Sikh and Christian communities; their rape, murder through honor killings, acid attacks, domestic violence and forced child-bride marriages are a routine occurrence that is over-looked by the government of Pakistan and in many instances is condoned by the authorities.
This flagrant disregard for human rights, flouting of international treaties and agreements and the general contempt by the Pakistani Army personnel towards non- Sunni people; does not bode well for the fate of Kulbhushan Jadhav.
If India (specifically the Government of Prime Minister Shri. Narendra Modi) does not take extremely stringent and strong action against Pakistan (including, if required an all out war to conquer Pakistan in its entirety); for its acts of violence and terrorism against India which have killed more than 10,000 of our security personnel from 1994 – 2017; then the murder by hanging of Jadhav will be just another insult that Indians will be made to swallow.
Sanjay Matkar is an audacious adventurer, an avid student of history and global politics. Recently, He has authored Showdown At Dabiq – Islamic State Vs Armies of Rome in the 21st century.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Forum for Integrated National Security.