India says arrest of an alleged Indian spy was an attempt to malign India’s image

Arrested alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav

Hitting out at Pakistan for ‘cooking up’ and planting stories against India, the government on Wednesday said that the arrest of an alleged Indian spy and his subsequent ‘confession’ was an attempt to malign India’s image but assured that there are no takers for such fabricated claims in the international community.

“The MEA has already come out with a statement regarding the forged, doctored video and the made up story being created by the Pakistani establishment. We don’t have to rake after that and I feel that there is an internal game within the Pakistani establishment, there government, Prime Minister and their agencies,” Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju told the media here.

Asserting that Islamabad is cooking up stories and creating doctored videos to defame India, he added that the fabrication will not have any takers in India and in the international community.

The Pakistan government yesterday released alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav’s confessional video in which he is shown owning up to clandestine activities in the country.

The Indian government rejected the allegation that Jadhav had acted at its behest and counter-charged that the former navy officer was tutored by the Pakistanis.

“We have seen a video released by Pakistani authorities of a former Indian naval officer, doing business in Iran, who is in Pakistani custody under unexplained circumstances,” the external affairs ministry said in a statement.

“The video has this individual making statements which have no basis in fact. That the individual claims to make the statements of his own free will not only challenges credulity but clearly indicates tutoring,” it said.

The external affairs ministry statement said that it was also relevant to note that despite its request, consular access has not been given to an Indian national under detention in a foreign country, as was the accepted international practice. “We are naturally concerned about his well-being in these circumstances,” it said.

“The government categorically rejects allegations that this individual was involved in subversive activities in Pakistan at our behest. Our enquiries reveal that he apparently was being harassed while operating a legitimate business from Iran.”

The video was aired during a joint press conference by Pakistan’s information minister Pervez Rasheed and Army spokesman Lieutenant General Asim Saleem Bajwa in Islamabad.

The video shows Jadhav saying he is a serving naval officer, he joined the intelligence services since 2003 and has been running a spy operation in Balochistan from Iran with the aim of instigating terrorist incidents there.