Visa application on Jadhav’s mother under review: FO

The pending visa application of the mother of Indian spy Kulbashan Jadhav is currently under review, said the Foreign Office (FO) on Thursday.

India had requested Pakistan to allow Avantika Jadhav to meet her son, who was sentenced to death by a military tribunal for espionage and terrorism in April.

Earlier this week, Indian Mini­ster for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj said that she had written a “personal letter” to Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz asking for approval of Avantika’s visa application so that she may travel to Pakistan.

Swaraj had also said that visas would be issued to Pakistani patients on the recommendation of Aziz.

During the weekly briefing, FO Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria regretted that “conditions” were being placed on the approval of medical visa applications of Pakistani patients seeking medical treatment in India.

Zakaria said that asking for recommendations from Aziz to grant visas was against “diplomatic norms”.

The spokesperson said that reports had been received of two more Pakistanis going “missing”; in June, two diplomats based in the Consulate General of Pakistan in Jalalabad, an eastern Afghan city, went missing while traveling to Pakistan by road.

Zakaria added that both the incidents have been taken up with the Afghan government, which has agreed to provide security to Pakistani nationals.

The spokesperson added that the FO was also in contact with the Nepalese government regarding retired Lt Col Mohammad Habib who went missing in April.

The media was also briefed on the Line of Control situation, saying that India had violated the ceasefire agreement 542 times in 2017 and 18 civilians had been killed as a result. Protests have been registered with the Indian high commissioner and the deputy high commissioner, he added.

“India often blames Pakistan for terrorist activities that they themselves have orchestrated,” he said.

Regional peace will remain a distant dream till the Kashmir issue is resolved, Zakaria added.

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