Indian diplomats in Islamabad continue to be at the receiving end of harassment by Pakistani authorities, even as both countries have agreed to adhere to the Vienna Convention’s rules laid for safeguarding diplomats’ interests.
According to reports, India has again sent a note verbale, an official diplomatic communication, to Foreign Ministry of Pakistan pertaining to reports of a planned power cut at an Indian diplomat’s residence in Islamabad. India has already raised concerns over diplomats being harassed last month. However, on 25th December, the second secretary’s residence in Islamabad has again been subject to deliberate power cut by for four hours by Pakistani authorities.
This is the peak winter season in Islamabad, which experiences harsh cold waves and deliberate power cuts at the diplomat’s residence was strongly objected to by the Indian officials.
“Such incidents cause a lot of inconvenience to the family members (including kids) of the officers,” The written complaint said. It also said that there should no scope of similar incidents in future, and Authorities should make sure the interest of diplomats are taken care off.
The note verbale also reportedly mentioned that the house had no electrical fault and no other home in the locality suffered power cut.
The incident is not an isolated one and is a continuation of the harassment that is faced by the High Commission of India at Islamabad. Officials had a tough time, settling at New High Commision residence, as Authorities turned a blind eye towards complaints of gas and telecom connections being cut. Officials have also reported that they are being harassed deliberately as their internet connections are being blocked are not being issued and even electricity supply is being cut off. Many diplomats have also alleged that guests visiting them are being harassed too.
In November last year, India had slammed Pakistan for denying access to Indian diplomats in Gurudwaras, on the occasion of 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev. Officials had to return without meeting pilgrims from India, despite possessing priorly obtained permission from the Pakistan Foreign Ministry.