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Victory for India : ICJ says Pak cannot hang Jadhav and gives India consular access

In a massive diplomatic win for India, the International Court of Justice stayed the execution of Kulbhushan Jadhav and upheld India’s right to consular access to the former naval officer.

"The court finds in favour of India's plea that no execution of Jadhav should be allowed until it has disposed the case" judge Ronny Abraham said.

The court said that taking into account the arguments, rights invoked by India are plausible. It also noted that The Vienna convention doesn't exclude those found guilty under terror and espionage.

The court also observed that charges fall within Article 36 of Vienna Convention and the dispute was about consular access. ICJ judge Ronny Abraham said the circumstances of Jadhav's arrest remains disputed.

The ICJ is the UN court for resolving disputes between nations, and its decisions are final and binding. However, it has no means to enforce its rulings and they have occasionally been ignored.


India's argument:

India has invoked article 36 of the Vienna convention and accused Pakistan of "egregious violations of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations".

It further charged that Jadhav had no access to legal counsel in Pakistan, and had been denied consular access. It said Jadhav's confession admitting his crimes had been extracted forcefully when he was in military custody.

India pushed for an oral submission before the court, asking Pakistan to take all measures necessary to ensure Jadhav is not executed. It wants Islamabad to report to the ICJ the action it has taken in pursuance of plea.

It also wants Pakistan to ensure that no action is taken that might prejudice India's or Jadhav's rights with respect to any decision the Court may render on the merits of the case.


Pakistan's argument:

It said Jadhav was awarded death sentence last month, a year after he was arrested on charges of espionage and subversive activities. While India stated that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he was involved in business activities after retiring from the Indian Navy, Pakistan claims to have arrested Jadhav from its restive Balochistan province.

Pakistan, in its argument, accused India of using ICJ to conduct a 'political theatre'.

It further said Vienna Convention provisions on consular access were not intended for a "spy" involved in terror activities.

Pakistan trashed India's charge in ICJ that Islamabad intended to execute Jadhav within days. "Simply by referring to the clemency process available as a right to commander Jadhav. A period of 150 days is provided for in this regard which even if (it) started on April 10, 2017, which is the date of conviction at first instance, could extend to well beyond August 2017. There is also, of course, the potential for the writ petition of the High Court to be invoked as we believe India must be well aware," Pakistan's counsel argued.

Pakistan further stated that India had been unable to explain discrepancy in Jadhav's passport which has a Muslim name on it.

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