The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has ordered the Pakistan government to contact the government of India again regarding the appointment of legal counsel to alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, a Delhi-based news organisation Hindustan Times reported.
As per details, high court’s larger bench, headed by Chief Justice Athar Minallah, conducted the hearing of a case related to the appointment of a defence lawyer for Jadhav.
The judge remarked that the Indian High Commission has not appointed a counsel yet despite being sent notices four times. The IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah remarked that the Indian government is apparently “not serious” in Jadhav’s matters.
The court directed the government of Pakistan to contact the Indian government again and adjourned the hearing till February 3.
In its last hearing, the IHC gave another chance to India to appoint a counsel for Jadhav, reports mentioned.
The court was informed by Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan that the Pakistan government was doing everything to ensure the International Court Justice’s (ICJ) directives.
The ICJ had directed Pakistan to inform Jadhav of his rights under Article 36 and grant India consular access. The court had also ruled that Pakistan should review the case while considering its laws.
However, the Attorney General said, New Delhi had raised several objections and deliberately did not want to be part of the court proceedings.
Pakistan claims that Kulbhushan Jadhav was arrested by authorities from Balochistan in a counter-intelligence operation on March 3, 2016. He is accused of carrying out espionage and sabotage activities against Pakistan at the behest of India’s intelligence agency
Pakistan also claims that Jadhav made important revelations about RAW’s role in sponsoring state terrorism in Pakistan. However, India has denied the allegations and said that he was kidnapped from Iran, where he was running a business in the port city of Chabahar after a “premature retirement” from the Navy.
The execution was stayed by Pakistan after India filed an appeal against the judgement at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on May 18, 2017. The Court pronounced its verdict in the case on July 17, 2019, rejecting India’s appeal for Jadhav’s release and ordered Pakistan to suspend the execution.
ICJ ruled that Pakistan will have to review the entire process of trial and conviction of Jadhav and provide India with consular access.
Following the order, Islamabad granted consular access to Jadhav. On September 2, 2019, Indian Charge d’ Affaires Gaurav Ahluwalia met Jadhav at a Pakistani sub-jail.
Almost a month after his arrest, Pakistan released a video of Jadhav “confessing” to being a spy. The Ministry of External Affairs, however, rejected the video saying it was doctored and fake.
In the video, Jadhav said he had been directing various activities in Karachi and Balochistan and that he was still with the Indian Navy.
Pakistan claims that Jadhav entered Chabahar in 2003 with a fake passport that showed his name as Hussain Mubarak Patel. Pakistani officials claimed that his job was to destabilise Pakistan by strengthening a separatist movement in Balochistan and Karachi.
India has refuted the claims, saying Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran, where he was running a business.