Kulbhushan Jadhav is innocent, release him says India’s External Affairs Minister

  • A day after the International Court of Justice (ICJ) delivered its verdict in Kulbhushan Jadhav case, India today asked Pakistan for Jadhav’s immediate return.
  • Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar, while speaking in the Parliament today said the government will put all efforts to bring Jadhav back to India.
  • The ICJ had yesterday announced that its Pakistan’s obligation to inform Jadhav his rights and allow India to provide counselor access to him.

After the final verdict of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case yesterday, India today asked Pakistan to immediately release him and vowed to bring the retired Navy officer back.

Yesterday, The International Court of Justice (ICJ) had in its final verdict directed Pakistan to suspend the death penalty on Jadhav given in 2017 for charges of sabotage and espionage. He will also be provided consular access which was denied by Pakistan.

“Pakistan was found to have deprived India of the right to communicate with Jadhav, have access to him, visit him in detention, and arrange his legal representation,” S Jaishankar, the Minister of External Affairs (MEA), said speaking at both the houses of Parliament.

Jadhav, the 47-year old retired Indian Navy officer was apprehended by Pakistan security forces in Balochistan province of Pakistan. He was charged with espionage, three years back. In April 2017, he was sentenced to death on charges of espionage and terrorism.

“Kulbhushan Jadhav is innocent of the charges made against him. His forced confession, without legal representation and due process will not change this reality,” Jaishankar further said.

“We once again call Pakistan to release and repatriate him forthwith,” the minister said.

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) had yesterday unanimously delivered the judgement that Jadhav must be given judicial representation, by a vote of 15-1.

The judgement was welcomed across party lines and all thumped the benches as Jaishankar said that the government will vigorously continue its efforts to ensure his safety and well being, and his timely return to India.

The ICJ clearly pronounced that the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations was breached by Pakistan as it did not notify India of Jadhav’s detention in time and deprived India of its right to communicate with and provide consular access to Jadhav.

It is to be noted that the Court has asked Pakistan to provide for appropriate reparation of its own choice in the case.

The minister termed the ICJ verdict as a vindication for not only India and Jadhav but also for all those who believe in the rule of law and respect and work by the international treaties.








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