Kulbhushan Jadhav case: ICJ verdict has exposed Pakistan, says Arun Jaitley

Mr. Jaitley said the ICJ did not comment on the validity of the Pakistan military courts because the World Court’s jurisdiction was limited to the interpretation and enforcement of the Vienna Convention.

Updated - July 18, 2019 09:26 pm IST

Published - July 18, 2019 09:24 pm IST - NEW DELHI

Arun Jaitley. File

Arun Jaitley. File

Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley dubbed the International Court of Justice judgment in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case a “comprehensive victory for India.”

“Pakistan lost conclusively before the ICJ. Its farcical processes through which the innocent are held guilty, stand exposed,” he wrote in his blog.He also said that the ICJ has concluded that Pakistan violated the Vienna Convention on two grounds — extension of natural justice principles and fair play.

Mr. Jaitley goes on to counter and disprove the claims made by Pakistan.

Firstly, Mr. Jaitley said the ICJ found that Pakistan had violated basic human rights by denying consular access, and hence, the execution of Mr. Jadhav cannot be allowed.

Mr. Jaitley said the ICJ did not comment on the validity of the Pakistan military courts because the World Court’s jurisdiction was limited to the interpretation and enforcement of the Vienna Convention.

But this limitation did not stop the ICJ from directing Pakistan to conduct an “effective” review and reconsideration of its denial of consular access amounting to violation of the principles of natural justice and fair trial. Thus, the denial of consular access itself would now be a relevant ground for challenging the conviction, Mr. Jaitley said.

Besides, the world court, he said, has made it amply clear that Pakistan has an unconditional obligation, in the review process, to fully examine and address the denial of consular access and the implications thereafter.

The court has even directed Pakistan to enact an “appropriate legislation”, if necessary, to ensure that the review and reconsideration process in the Jadhav case is effective.

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