External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Thursday said the meeting between alleged Indian spy Kulbushan Jadhav and his mother and wife lacked “humanity” and “goodwill” accusing Pakistan of conducting it as a “propaganda exercise” and “an opportunity to exploit the situation”.
Sushma Swaraj was making a statement in the Rajya Sabha on the December 25 meeting between death row inmate Jadhav and his wife Chetna and mother Avanti.
The Minister met Jadhav’s wife and mother after they returned from Pakistan and spoke to Avanti again on Thursday morning.
Sushma Swaraj condemned the way the Pakistani authorities allowed the meeting at the Foreign Office in Islamabad and asked them to change their clothes and shoes, and remove bangles and even their “mangalsutras”.
“The first thing that Kulbhushan asked his mother was ‘what happened to father’ after he saw no mangalsutra on his mother.
“The manner in which the meeting was organised was appalling. Their clothes, shoes, bangles and even their mangalsutras were taken away. Their human rights were violated again and again, and an environment of fear was created for them,” Sushma Swaraj said, a day after Opposition members expressed outrage over the treatment meted out to Jadhav’s family.
The Minister said the meeting between a mother and her son, a wife and her husband “after going through so much was turned into an exercise of propaganda and an opportunity to exploit the situation.
“The family wished to meet Jadhav and we arranged for it. Even Pakistan agreed for it this month (December). This could have been a step forward for both countries, but this wasn’t to be.”
She said it was absurd on behalf of Pakistan to suggest there was a mystery chip or camera or recording device planted inside Kulbhushan’s wife’s shoes. “It is an absurdity beyond measure.”