New Delhi: India on Thursday rejected as "completely baseless" Pakistan's allegations against Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian national and a former Indian Navy officer.
Addressing the press, Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup also said that India had sent eight note verbales to Pakistan for consular access to Jadhav.
Asked about media reports quoting Pakistan Foreign Advisor Sartaj Aziz as saying there was no "conclusive evidence" against Jadhav which were later denied by the Pakistan Foreign Ministry, Swarup said, "We have seen conflicting media reports about this issue. This is a pattern we have seen in the past as well."
Even after more than nine months of keeping him "wrongfully and illegally" in custody, Pakistani authorities have not found a shred of evidence against him, he said.
"We demand immediate consular access to him in accordance with relevant international conventions and his earliest release from wrongful confinement. We have also sent eight Note Verbales to the Pakistan Foreign Office on this issue," Swarup added.
Yesterday, addressing a full Senate chamber, Aziz reportedly admitted that the dossier on Jadhav contained mere statements.
"It did not have any conclusive evidence," he was quoted as saying by Geo TV.
"What the dossier contained was not enough. Now it is up to the concerned authorities how long they take to give us more matter on the agent," Aziz supposedly said.
However, later, Pakistan released a statement saying that statement attributed to Aziz on alleged 'Indian spy' was 'absolutely incorrect'.
"There is irrefutable proof against Kulbhushan Yadav who had also made a public confession in March this year, Pakistan's statement said, as per ANI.
Jadhav, who was reportedly arrested in Balochistan after he entered from Iran, has been accused by Pakistan of planning "subversive activities" in the country.
Pakistan Army had also released a "confessional video" of Jadhav, who said he was the serving Indian Navy officer.
In March this year, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had said that the External Affairs Ministry had been asked to extend all possible help to Jadhav.
It is said that he often carried cargo to and from Iranian ports bordering Pakistan and has nothing to do with India's external intelligence agency, RAW.
PTI had quoted sources saying at that time that there was no proof that Jadhav, who owns a cargo business in Iran, was arrested in Balochistan.
Jadhav could have been arrested after he strayed into Pakistani waters and was being wrongly charged, sources had said.
(With Agency inputs)