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India asks Pakistan to provide unimpeded consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav

Pakistan on Thursday granted India consular access to Jadhav on August 2. To this end, Raveesh Kumar, MEA spokersperson, said India would timely respond to the proposal -- through diplomatic channels.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Published on: August 02, 2019 15:16 IST
The ICJ on July 17, in the case relating to Indian national

The ICJ on July 17, in the case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, ruled in favour of India on merits, affirming the 49-year-old retired Indian Navy officer's right to consular access and notification.

India has asked Pakistan to provide unimpeded consular access to its national Kulbhushan Jadhav.

Sources in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday said India has asked Pakistan that the consular access should be provided in an environment free from the fear of intimidation and reprisal in the light of the orders of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Pakistan's response on this is now awaited.

Pakistan on Thursday granted India consular access to Jadhav on August 2.

To this end, Raveesh Kumar, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokersperson, said India would timely respond to the proposal -- through diplomatic channels.

The ICJ on July 17, in the case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, ruled in favour of India on merits, affirming the 49-year-old retired Indian Navy officer's right to consular access and notification. The court further directed Pakistan to provide effective review and reconsideration of his conviction and sentences.

Jadhav was sentenced to death by the Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017. His sentencing evoked a sharp reaction in India.

Pakistan claims that its security forces arrested Jadhav from restive Balochistan province on March 3, 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran.

India, however, maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy. 

India moved the ICJ in May 8, 2017 for the "egregious violation" of the provisions of the Vienna Convention by Pakistan by repeatedly denying New Delhi consular access to Jadhav.

A 10-member bench of the ICJ, which was set up after World War II to resolve international disputes, on May 18, 2017 had restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case.

On Wednesday at the ICJ, the world court said that Jadhav’s death sentence should remain suspended until Pakistan effectively reviews and reconsiders the conviction/sentence in light of Pakistan’s breach of Art 36(1) i.e. denial of consular access and notification.

The ICJ also said Pakistan breached obligations under the Vienna Convention by not informing Jadhav of his rights.

The court has, however, rejected most of the remedies sought by India, including annulment of military court decision convicting Jadhav, his release and safe passage to India.

The ICJ verdict read: "A continued stay of execution constitutes an indispensable condition for the effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence of Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav. The court finds that Pakistan deprived India of the right to communicate with and have access to Kulbhushan Jadhav, to visit him in detention and to arrange for his legal representation,and thereby breached obligations incumbent upon it under Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

The verdict in the high-profile case came nearly five months after a 15-member bench of ICJ led by Judge Yusuf had reserved its decision on February 21 after hearing oral submissions by India and Pakistan. The proceedings of the case took two years and two months to complete.

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