India, Pak to cross swords at ICJ

Wiki Media

Wiki Media

So far India has made 16 requests for consular access to Jadhav to the Pakistani government, all of which have been denied.

In its March-29 declaration, Pakistan had recognised the jurisdiction of the ICJ but had specified before it that this would not apply to "matters related to the national security of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan".

The International Court of Justice [official website] on Wenesday scheduled a public hearing [press release] to resolve a dispute over an Indian man accused of spying after receiving notice [press release] from Indian officials that a Pakistani military court has sentenced the man to death [JURIST report].

During the meeting, officials said, participants expressed their dismay at the haste with which Khulbhushan's case was processed and set for hearing, leaving Pakistan with just two days for preparing a defence.

In another development on the Kulbhushan Jadhav imbroglio, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) directed Pakistan to participate and cooperate in the proceedings on the case filed by India to stop his execution.

Besides, Pakistani officials say the military court verdict on Jadhav is not final. It can also get around the possibility of Pakistan invoking clauses from a bilateral pact on consular access. One is the review in FGCM (Field General Court Martial), the second is the Supreme Court and the final is the mercy petition.

Former Solicitor General Harish Salve who is leading the Indian legal team at The Hague told NDTV that he could not discuss the case which would come up for hearing on 15 May.

Ali Nawaz Chohan, who served as a judge at ICJ during 2006-09, shares the same view.

She said ICJ's intervention "reflected the larger worldwide sentiment against Pakistan's decision".

But he feared that the ICJ being very sensitive to human rights cases can overlook its jurisdiction.

Islamabad said the Indian move (to approach ICJ in Jadhav case) was an attempt to divert attention from "state-sponsored terrorism in Pakistan" and that it was analysing the ICJ's authority in the matter. Former diplomat Vivek Katju anxious that it would open the option for Pakistan to similarly take other bilateral issues to an global fora.

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