India is expected to take a decision in the next few days on whether or not to seek a review, as asked by Islamabad
New Delhi: Terming Pakistan’s claim that Kulbhushan Jadhav, who is incarcerated in Pakistan’s custody, has refused to initiate review petition as ‘‘a continuation of the farce that has been in play for the last four years’’, India is expected to take a decision in the next few days on whether or not to seek a review, as asked by Islamabad.
The May 20 Pakistani ordinance meant to facilitate the review, as claimed by Islamabad, allows Indian time only up to July 20 to convey its decision.
Emphasizing that Jadhav has clearly been coerced to refuse to file a review in his case, MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava recently said, ‘‘We are assessing our legal options and we remain committed to protect the life of our Indian national. We have been pursuing through diplomatic channels full and effective implementation of the ICJ judgment in the case. The media statement made by Pakistan in the case seeks to mask its continuing reticence to implement ICJ judgment in letter and spirit.’’
‘‘Pakistan has on 20 May 2020 passed an Ordinance to allow for the High Court to review the sentence awarded by their military court. They have all along maintained that their laws allowed for effective review and reconsideration while we have protested it all along. Now, after almost a year, they have made a U-turn and issued an Ordinance to ostensibly provide for some sort of review. We have already expressed our serious concerns at the content of the Ordinance and how it violates the ICJ judgment. Pakistan is only seeking to create an illusion of remedy,’’ he added.
Meanwhile, high-level sources said that Pakistan’s refusal to allow India remedial consular access, meaning private and unrestricted, and also a lawyer from outside Pakistan to represent him has left India with little choice. The review offered by Pakistan is purely on its own terms. India also doubts Pakistan’s motive in introducing an ordinance when Islamabad had said in the past that there were already laws which allowed for a review of Jadhav’s death sentence.
It may be recalled that on 8th July, Pakistan had said that Kulbhushan Jadhav had refused to file a review petition in the Islamabad High Court against his conviction by a military court in 2017 and decided to go ahead with his mercy plea. In a press conference in Islamabad, Director General (South Asia & SAARC) Zahid Hafeez Chaudhry and Additional Attorney General Ahmed Irfan had said that the Pakistan government had promulgated an ordinance on May 20 to provide an opportunity to Jadhav to file a review petition against his sentence and conviction.
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Last Updated Jul 14, 2020, 8:01 PM IST