International Court of Justice likely to deliver verdict in Kulbhushan Jadhav case this month

International Court of Justice likely to deliver verdict in Kulbhushan Jadhav case this month

New Delhi: The International Court of Justice is expected to pronounce later this month its verdict in the case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, who is on death row in Pakistan, official sources said Thursday.

Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of espionage and terrorism in April 2017. India approached the ICJ in May 2017 against Pakistan for denying consular access to Jadhav.

India had also challenged the “farcical trial” by the military court of Pakistan against 48-year-old Jadhav. The ICJ on May 18, 2017 had restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case.

The world court held a four-day public hearing in the case in February during which both India and Pakistan submitted their detailed pleas and responses.

India based its case on two broad issues — breach of Vienna Convention on consular access and the process of resolution. 

India also urged the ICJ to annul Jadhav’s death sentence and order his immediate release, saying the verdict by a Pakistani military court based on a “farcical case” and it failed to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process.

Pakistan on its part insisted that the Indian Navy officer was a “spy” and not a businessman.

Pakistan claims that its security forces arrested Jadhav from restive Balochistan province on March 3, 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran 

However, India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy. Jadhav’s sentencing had evoked a sharp reaction in India 

Pakistan had rejected India’s plea for consular access to Jadhav at the ICJ, claiming that New Delhi wants to get the information gathered by its “spy”.

However, Pakistan facilitated a meeting of Jadhav with his mother and wife in Islamabad on December 25, 2017. 

When asked whether the verdict in the case will be announced this month, MEA Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the date has to be announced by the ICJ.