Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday welcomed the verdict of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which ordered Pakistan not to execute Kulbhushan Jadhav and asked it to reconsider the sentence awarded to him by a military court. It is seen as a major victory for India and reprieve for Jadhav.
PM Modi tweeted: “We welcome today’s verdict in the @CIJ_ICJ. Truth and justice have prevailed. Congratulations to the ICJ for a verdict based on extensive study of facts. I am sure Kulbhushan Jadhav will get justice. Our Government will always work for the safety and welfare of every Indian.”
The ICJ, while rejecting all objections raised by Pakistan, ordered the neigbouring country to grant consular access to Jadhav “without further delay”. The court held that Pakistan had “breached” the Vienna Convention by denying Jadhav this right.
The former Indian Navy officer Jadhav was kidnapped by Pakistani spy agencies on March 3, 2016, from Iran where he was in connection with his business. Pakistan had claimed that Jadhav was arrested from its restive province of Balochistan and labeled him as a spy. It notified India about it through a press release on March 25, 2016, 22 days after he was picked up.
The ICJ, which was moved by India on May 8, 2017, gave a detailed verdict on Wednesday, rejecting all the objections of Pakistan, including one unanimously on the admissibility of the case and also the claims by Islamabad that India had not provided the actual nationality of Jadhav.
Pak claims verdict its victory
Meanwhile, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi termed it a victory for Pakistan and Jadhav shall “remain in Pakistan” and be “treated in accordance with the laws” of the country. He tweeted: “Commander Jadhav shall remain in Pakistan. He shall be treated in accordance with the laws of Pakistan. This is a victory for Pakistan.”
Reema Omar, the International Legal Advisor for South Asia at the ICJ, admitted that the court had asked Pakistan to suspend the death sentence awarded to Jadhav. Omar tweeted: “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.”