The International Court of Justice on Wednesday ruled in the favour of India in its appeal against the death sentence given to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav by Pakistan. The ICJ also granted consular access to India. The ICJ said that Jadhav’s death sentence should remain suspended until Pakistan effectively reviews and reconsiders the decision. It is a big jolt to Pakistan.
The 49-year-old retired Indian Navy officer was sentenced to death by the Pakistani military court on charges of espionage and terrorism after a closed trial in April 2017. His sentencing had evoked a sharp reaction in India. President of the Court, Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, read out the verdict during a public sitting at the Peace Palace in The Hague, Netherlands. The verdict in the high-profile case comes nearly five months after a 15-member bench of ICJ led by Judge Yusuf had reserved its decision on February 21 after hearing oral submissions by India and Pakistan. The proceedings of the case took two years and two months to complete.
India moved the ICJ on May 8, 2017, for the “egregious violation” of the provisions of the Vienna Convention by Pakistan by repeatedly denying New Delhi consular access to Jadhav. A bench of the ICJ on May 18, 2017 had restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case.