NEW DELHI: Sushma Swaraj made a stinging statement in parliament today
Mother and wife met Kulbhushan Jadhav in Islamabad on Monday
The women were not allowed to use their native Marathi language
Kulbhushan Jadhav was forced to see his mother and wife in the form of “widows”, without their mangalsutra, bindi and bangles, when they met in Islamabad on Monday, Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said in a stinging statement in parliament today on the way Pakistan treated the family of the former naval officer it has sentenced to death.
“Avanti Jadhav choked up as she told me the first question her son asked was – how is Baba (father)? Looking at me like this, he feared something bad had happened. he was reassured only when he saw his wife in the same state,” Ms Swaraj said in an impassioned and hard-hitting statement in both houses.
Pakistan, said Ms Swaraj, used the emotional reunion of a “mother with her son and a wife with her husband” after 22 months as a propaganda tool.
Kulbhushan Jadhav was sentenced to death by a military court in Pakistan in April.
“There was violation after violation of human rights. There was neither humanity nor goodwill. Pakistan should be condemned in the strongest words for this behaviour,” said the minister, pausing more than once for sips of water.
In the name of security, she said, Mr Jadhav’s mother and wife Chetankul were forced to change and wear what was given to them by the Pakistanis. “His mother, who wears only saris, was forced to wear a salwar Kameez,” Ms Swaraj to cries of “shame” from parliamentarians.
“His mother told me she told the Pakistani officials she had never removed the mangalsutra, the symbol of her marriage…but they said nothing doing. This is the height of be-adabi (misbehavior).”
Cries of “Pakistan Murdabad (down with Pakistan)” rang out in the Lok Sabha.