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Strip searched and humiliated

Shiban  Khaibri
Yet again, Pakistan’s farce stands exposed in arranging a sham meeting between the son in their captivity and his distraught mother and the wife, travelling from India all the way to meet him. Kulbushan Yadav, an Indian national was abducted in March 2016 by the notorious ISI officials of Pakistan from Iran – Pakistan border and after fabricating his documents in a desperate bid to save its face from the growing discontentment and unrest in Baluchistan, was hurriedly “tried” in a Kangaroo court and sentenced to death. So much hurry and a mess, Pakistan made of the issue, otherwise without any substance, that while leaking it to the media , several discrepancies were observed. Pakistan must have later realized about the glaring inconsistencies in the fabrication of Yadav’s documents but tried to brave it in vain. It is fairly known that his death sentence has been stayed by the ICJ after India took a firm stand that the military court proceedings were farcical and the proposed execution of Yadav would constitute a simple murder in first degree. Harish Salve , a known legal expert successfully argued to the satisfaction of the bench of the ICJ at the Hague.
Pakistan never agreed for a consular access by India but agreed to let Yadav’s family meet him. Pakistani High Commissioner in New Delhi issued visas to the mother and wife of Yadav earlier this last week of the year. Kulbushan Yadav, a prisoner on death row for alleged and fabricated crime of acts of espionage, has all through been denied the basic human rights by Pakistani government, read the military establishment there, and only subjected to extreme degrees of physical torture. However, following granting of permission to Yadav’s family comprising the mother and the wife by Pakistan, both reached Islamabad on Dec25.They were driven to Ministry of Foreign Affairs building and Indian Deputy High Commissioner accompanied them. The government over there wanted to project its “humanitarian” face by granting this meeting on a day which coincided with the birth anniversary of M. A. Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. Contrary to the tenets of agreement between the two governments, Pakistan deliberately allowed media persons to be there much before the arrival of the two distraught family members of Yadav and remained there till their departure following each step of the meeting. A glass interface and the intercom between them, at the outset, made a complete mockery of the meeting.
For full 35 minutes’ meeting between the mother and the wife sitting at a distance separated by a glass cage was choreographed and they were under the eagle eyed “surveillance” of Pakistani officials. It was not the end of the sham humanitarian face of Pakistan but right from their arrival till they left, they were ill treated, humiliated and heckled. Yadav , an ex officer of Navy looked pale, gaunt and tortured. Not only this, perhaps he could not be seen in a position of normal and comfortable sitting in his chair across his family members. The visit of both the ladies proved nightmarish in that they were ill treated right from the start of the meeting till they left the venue. Both the ladies were strip searched to the extent of disrobing. Their traditional Indian dress worn by them was got removed under the alibi of security reasons. They were allegedly given Pakistani dresses of “shilvar – kurta”. The matter did not end here; their shoes were removed and changed. The extreme of the callous inhuman face of Pakistan was to be seen displayed on these two hapless women in the form of getting  their Mangal Sutras removed which ordinarily no Hindu woman would ever agree as even thinking about the same was construed extremely inauspicious. Religious sensibilities and cultural connect are the two inseparable facets of the importance of wearing the Mangal Sutra .  This fact is sufficiently known to Pakistan as having been a part of this great culture of India. Not only was the Mangal Sutra, even the Bindi on their foreheads asked to be removed by the host but hostile country officials in charge of the ruse meeting.  Bangles even were not spared, they too were got removed. Religious sensibilities were gallingly disregarded. The two were, prior to the meeting strip searched, harassed and bullied blasting the claim of Pakistan’s “humanitarian ground” as nothing short of brazen display of hostility.
When the mother and the wife of Kulbushan Yadav left the venue of the meeting, they were deliberately made to wait for the vehicle which was to take them from there. The trick was played deliberately in order to expose the hapless mother – wife face the awkward and insulting remarks and questions from the media persons collected there by Pakistani officials deliberately and under well thought of strategy. The Indian deputy High Commissioner was seen desperately asking for the vehicle and the same was watched live as his body language which depicted dismay and indignation over such unexpected attitude of the belligerent hostile country. The delay caused in arrival of the vehicle was only to humiliate the ladies which perhaps would never be appreciated in any part of the civilized world.
Cultural and religious beliefs of the prisoners in any civilized country have got to be respected as per UN conventions and international laws which Pakistan felt proud in violating. Perhaps those in charge of managing this meeting never knew the sensitivities and the emotional feelings of a mother touching her son, hugging him and fondling him with her hands  which gives a mental and emotive catharsis to the mother more than the son , the same was ruthlessly denied. Heavens would have not fallen if the wife would have been allowed to hold the hand of her husband for a moment as perhaps, under the given circumstances the said meeting would have not been the first one only.
The climax of the level of nadir of respecting human values was when the visiting unfortunate mother – wife were not allowed to speak in their mother tongue Marathi but were asked to speak in English language only. The mother kept helplessly looking at her son from the glass interface but not speak a word that too through intercom as she was not conversant with English. Hence a sadist pleasure was reaped by the Pakistani officials by denying both physical touch as well as conversing with each other between the son and the mother. If this is the humanitarian face of Pakistan, what could be the inhuman face?
While leaving, the shoes were not returned to the wife of the caged innocent Yadav and duly warned by the Indian response that no mischief with the “shoes retention” should be attempted. The response was apt, pointed and befitting from Indian External Affairs Ministry on the manner, the tenor and the tactics employed for arranging the devastating meeting and the humiliation and frustration heaped on the two ladies by Pakistani government was condemned unequivocally.
It is a travesty that 26/11 plotter terrorist responsible for 165 killing of innocent people in Mumbai is allowed to open his “political Party’s” office in Lahore, eulogized,  courted  and given a floral welcome  but an innocent is caged and not only falsely implicated but maltreated in such ways. What have Mani Shankar Ayer and Co to say on this as many still turn out apologists for that country? Have we ever in India treated anyone visiting this country from Pakistan even remotely slightly in this manner?


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