‘Pakistan should permit Indian lawyer or Queen’s Counsel to characterize Kulbhushan Jadhav’: MEA

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'Pakistan must allow Indian lawyer or Queen's Counsel to represent Kulbhushan Jadhav': MEA

The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday stressed that Pakistan should allow an Indian lawyer of Queen’s Counsel to represent Kulbhushan Jadhav for a free and fair trial. Addressing the media, MEA official spokesperson Anurag Srivastava stated that the Pakistani government had failed to fulfill its obligation to sincerely implement the ICJ verdict. He also urged the Imran Khan-led government to provide all relevant documents of the case and facilitate unconditional consular access to Jadhav.

Jadhav having business dealings in Iran was abducted by Pakistan in March 2016. After a military court awarded him a death sentence on the charges of espionage and terrorism in 2017, India moved the ICJ. In its judgment, the ICJ stayed Jadhav’s death sentence until the review and reconsideration of his sentence and conviction are completed. Additionally, the ICJ directed Pakistan to allow India consular access to Jadhav. 

MEA official spokesperson Anurag Srivastava remarked, “The government of Pakistan has not been able to fulfill its obligations to implement the ICJ judgment in its letter and spirit. There are some basic issues which they need to address: one, the provision for all relevant documents of this case, to provide for unimpeded and unconditional consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav and the appointment of an Indian lawyer or a Queen’s Counsel to ensure that the trial is free and fair.”

Read: MEA Affirms ‘diplomatic’ Contact With Pak Demanding Indian Lawyer For Kulbhushan Jadhav

Read: Kulbhushan Jadhav Case: Islamabad HC Forms 3-member Bench As MEA Punctures Pak’s Claim

Pakistan extends ordinance

Pakistan promulgated the ‘International Court of Justice (Review and Reconsideration) Ordinance 2020’ permitting the review of a military court’s decision at the Islamabad High Court. This ordinance came in the wake of the verdict of the ICJ in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case. On September 3, the Islamabad High Court directed the Imran Khan-led government to give India another chance to appoint a legal representative for Jadhav.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah, Justice Amir Farooq and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb adjourned the hearing of the matter until October 3. During the hearing, Pakistan’s Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan argued that India had not responded to the offer for appointing a lawyer despite granting consular access to Jadhav. On September 14, Pakistan’s National Assembly extended the ‘International Court of Justice (Review and Re-consideration) Ordinance 2020’ through a voice vote for 4 months.

Read: MEA Repudiates Pakistan Claim Of Reaching Out For Appointing Kulbhushan Jadhav’s Lawyer