50-year-old Kulbhushan Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistan military court in April 2017 after he was convicted of espionage and terrorism.
Kulbhushan Jadhav (File photo)
The Islamabad High Court based in Pakistan gave important instructions to the Foreign Office on Thursday in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case. The court directed that it should explain the situation to India in relation to the jurisdiction to implement the decision of the international court in the Kulbhushan case. Jadhav, 50, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court in April 2017 after he was convicted of espionage and terrorism. After this, India moved the international court and challenged Pakistan’s denial of diplomatic access and capital punishment.
The Hague-based international court ruled in July 2019 that Pakistan should effectively review and reconsider the decision and conviction of Jadhav. Also give diplomatic access to India without delay. The international court said in its ruling that Pakistan should provide Jadhav with the appropriate platform to appeal against the decision of the military court. The government of Pakistan issued a special ordinance last year and filed a petition in the Islamabad High Court, which has been repeatedly asking India to appoint an advocate for Jadhav.
Debate on appointing a lawyer
A large bench of Justice Athar Minallah, Justice Aamir Farooq and Justice Miyangul Hasan Aurangzeb is hearing the case in Islamabad High Court. According to the news of The Express Tribune newspaper, the High Commission of India, through a lawyer, challenged the jurisdiction of the Islamabad High Court to appoint a defense counsel in the case and the court tried to clarify the objection.
‘The matter does not come under the jurisdiction of Islamabad HC’
During the hearing, Justice Minallah asked Barrister Shahnawaz Noon, counsel for the High Commission of India, whether he had informed New Delhi about the Jadhav case or not. To this, the counsel replied that the Government of India is of the opinion that the matter does not come under the jurisdiction of the High Court of Islamabad. At this, the Chief Justice of Islamabad High Court, Athar Minallah commented, “It seems that the Indian government has misgivings about the hearing of this court”. It is also associated with the implementation of the decision of the international court. The Justice also directed the Foreign Office to contact the Government of India to clarify the situation.
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