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What ICJ verdict means for India, Pakistan and Kulbhushan Jadhav

Here Is What International Court Of Justice Verdict Means For India, Pakistan And Kulbhushan Jadhav, Who Has Been Sentenced To Death By A Pakistani Court.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Shashikant Sharma | Updated on: 17 Jul 2019, 11:09:38 PM
Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, has been sentenced to death by Pakistan.

Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, has been sentenced to death by Pakistan.

New Delhi:

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Wednesday delivered its verdict on the high profile case of former Indian Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav, who was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of “espionage and terrorism”. Pronouncing the much awaited judgment, President of the United Nation’s top court Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf found Pakistan guilty of breaching the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations and stayed his execution. The ICJ also granted India consular access to Jadhav and directed Pakistan for “effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence”. The ICJ, which is the principal judicial organ of the UN, however, rejected India’s plea to acquit and release Jadhav.

The judgment of the ICJ was hailed by India as a “big victory”, while Pakistan claimed it was a setback to New Delhi as the World Court denied its request to release and repatriate Jadhav. With both countries claiming the judgment of ICJ being favourable to them, here is what the verdict of the ICJ actually means for India, Pakistan and Kulbhushan Jadhav.

What ICJ verdict means for India:

After Pakistan sentenced Jadhav to death following a close trial in a military court, India had moved the Permanent Court of International Justice, accusing Islamabad of violating the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations. India claimed that Kulbhushan Jadhav was not arrested from Pakistani territory but abducted from Iran, while he was on a business trip. New Delhi had requested acquittal, repatriation of Kulbhushan Jadhav, which the ICJ denied. However, India was granted consular access to Jadhav Article 36 the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations (VCCR). This means, India will now have access to Jadhav and it will be allowed to communicate with him through a consular officer. A consular normally operates out of the Indian embassy and is responsible for protecting the interest of Jadhav, an Indian citizen. After ICJ’s ruling India will now be able to arrange legal representation for Jadhav, something he didn’t get during the trial in military court.

What ICJ verdict means for Pakistan:

Despite India’s repeated request, Pakistan failed to adhere by the Vienna Convention and rejected provide New Delhi consular access to its citizen facing criminal charges. Pakistan had argued that the matter was out of the ICJ’s jurisdiction and didn’t fall under the purview of Vienna Convention. However, the ICJ in its verdict clearly stated 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 court granted India access to Jadhav, which means Pakistan will no more be able to stop India from communicating with Jadhav in person. The ICJ also stayed Jadhav’s execution until "effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence". This means, Pakistan will now have to review the death sentence awarded to Jadhav.

What ICJ verdict means for Kulbhushan Jadhav:

The International Court of Justice rejected India’s plea to acquit and release of Kulbhushan Jadhav, which means his fate still hangs in balance. Although, he will now have an Indian consular to represent him in the Pakistani court, it is highly unlikely that Islamabad will let him go away easily. With Jadhav’s conviction on the charges of “espionage and terrorism”, Pakistan wants to sell the world its theory of Indian role in destabilising the country. The ICJ judgment delays Jadhav’s execution and grant of consular access increases his chances of getting back to India, but the ball is still in the Pakistan’s court.

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First Published : 17 Jul 2019, 11:09:38 PM