Pakistan’s Defence Minister Khawaja Asif today said the death sentence handed out to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav for “spying” should serve as a warning to those “plotting” against the country.
“Those plotting against Pakistan will not be spared,” Asif said.
The statement came after an army court sentenced Jadhav to death after finding him guilty of “espionage and sabotage activities” and the army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa approved his execution.
Jadhav’s sentencing by a Pakistani military court was according to the law, Asif told Geo TV.
He said the death sentence handed out to Jadhav should serve as a “warning to those plotting” against Pakistan”.
Asif said that Pakistan would use all constitutional force available against those acting against the sovereignty of the country.
“Soldiers and civilians of Pakistan have given sacrifices for this country and their sacrifices demand us to give a befitting reply to terrorists and those who aid and facilitate them,” he said.
The defence minister further said that Jadhav’s “confession” was a public document and if India raises the issue of his death sentence, Islamabad will reply to New Delhi.
“Jadhav came (to Pakistan) with the approval of the Indian government,” he claimed and said there is no doubt that India was “fueling terrorism in Pakistan.”
Replying to a question on dealing the issue on diplomatic and political fronts, he said that Pakistan would present the issue on every international forum.
According to Asif, the world had acknowledged Pakistan’s struggle against terrorism and the country was dealing with this “menace” from both the “eastern and western front”.
Pakistan sentenced Jadhav to death for carrying out espionage and sabotage activities in Balochistan and Karachi, the military’s media wing Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement.
India’s Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar summoned Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit and gave a demarche, which said the proceedings that have led to the sentence against Jadhav are “farcical in the absence of any credible evidence” against him.
Asif rejected the Indian stance of terming death sentence as a premeditated murder and claimed Jadhav was involved in carrying out terrorist activities in Pakistan and all legal formalities were met during his trial.
He accused India of “committing premeditated murder of the innocent people of Kashmir since last seven decades”.
He said New Delhi’s stubbornness is the biggest hindrance in the way of the relationship between the two countries.
Asif made it clear that the law will take its course if anyone poses a threat to the security and integrity of Pakistan. He claimed India has not fulfilled its legal and moral obligations in bringing perpetrators of Samjhauta Express train blasts to justice.
The Pakistan Prime Minister’s Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz also said that Jadhav’s sentencing was done according to the law. He made the remarks while responding to a question in Senate, the upper house of parliament.
Aziz said that it was too early to say when the sentence would be implemented.