At ICJ, Pakistan says India tried to distract, shift spotlight from its ‘unlawful conduct’
Pakistan used its final round of arguments in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case at the International Court of Justice to question India’s stance that the matter should be decided on the grounds that he hadn’t received a fair trial and his rights under the Vienna Convention were violated.Updated: Feb 21, 2019 23:50 IST
Pakistan used its final round of arguments in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case at the International Court of Justice to question India’s stance that the matter should be decided on the grounds that he hadn’t received a fair trial and his rights under the Vienna Convention were violated.
The 48-year-old former navy officer was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court in April 2017, a year after he was arrested and charged with alleged involvement in spying and subversive activities.
India has denied the charges and said Jadhav was abducted from the Iranian port of Chabahar. The ICJ stayed Jadhav’s execution after India approached it last year.
Pakistan’s counsel Khawar Qureshi contended during the second round of oral arguments that India had not replied to arguments and instead tried to “distract” and to “shift the spotlight from its unlawful conduct”.
Qureshi also claimed India was misreading the 2008 bilateral agreement on consular access and that it was “wrong for India to disparage the military courts of Pakistan”, which have procedures and standards similar to those of civil courts.
India has already said the 2008 agreement cannot be applied in Jadhav’s case and that the matter should be decided according to the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
Pakistan attorney general Anwar Mansoor Khan, in his concluding remarks, said the country’s civil, special and military courts had “robust” procedures for review and reconsideration which Jadhav could avail of. He also argued that some trials, such as Jadhav’s case, cannot be made public because they involve “state security and state secrets”.
New Delhi has said Jadhav did not have a proper defence during his secret trial by a military court and this was a violation of his rights.
Khan also sought to link the case of Afzal Guru, the bombing of the Samjhauta Express, the 2002 riots in Gujarat and the Pulwama attack to Jadhav’s case. He added there was also a FIR against Jadhav “in the civilian domain” and a “case of terrorism is to commence against him”.
Following the arguments, the ICJ bench announced it will inform both parties in due course about the date on which the judgement will be pronounced. It is expected the court will take several months to give its ruling.
First Published: Feb 21, 2019 23:48 IST