NEW DELHI: Illegal detention of former Indian Navy officer Kulbushan Jadhav and threat of his life was the main reason for New Delhi to move International Court of Justice (ICJ) against his execution, according to the External Affairs Ministry.
Calling it a “carefully considered decision”, MEA spokesperson Gopal Baglay said consular access to Jadhav was denied by Pakistan despite 16 requests and this was in contravention of the Vienna Convention.
Asserting that in such circumstances India had no option but to move the ICJ to protect the "son of India's" life, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj wrote to Pakistan Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz on April 27 requesting visa for Jadhav's family. As per the information with the government, the family has been granted visa.
MEA claims that the government has no information about the location of Jadhav in Pakistan and also his health condition.
Speaking a day after India achieved a diplomatic victory after ICJ stayed Jadhav’s execution, Baglay said Islamabad has not responded to India's request for Jadhav's case papers, including charge sheet and also there is no information on the status of an appeal by Jadhav's family against the order of a Pakistan military court which sentenced him to death on charges of "spying".”
Following that, ICJ has informed India that an action has been initiated on the ‘provisional measures’ and now there is legal judicial procedure to be followed.
Baglay also said former Solicitor General Harish Salve, who is representing India in the ICJ in the case, has mentioned that "address to the court is likely to be in next few days".
While referring to the ICJ rules that said a request on the indication of provisional measures shall have priority over all other cases, Bagley said the "provisional measures" granted by the ICJ including a halt to Jadhav's execution was binding on Pakistan.
The ICJ rules also make it clear that "pending the meeting of the court, the President may call upon the parties to act in such a way as will enable any order the court may make on the request for provisional measures to have its appropriate effects."
The ICJ stayed Jadhav's execution after India initiated proceedings against Pakistan, accusing it of "egregious violations of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations" in the matter of his detention and trial. "In my capacity as president of the court,... I call upon Your Excellency's government, pending the court's decision on the request for the indication of provisional measures to act in such a way as will enable any order the Court may make on this request to have its appropriate effects," the ICJ president wrote to Pakistan prime minister.
As per ICJ release that India had submitted that it has information that Jadhav was "kidnapped from Iran, where he was carrying on business after retiring from the Indian Navy and was then shown to have been arrested in Balochistan" on March 3, 2016, and that the Indian authorities were notified of that arrest on March 25, 2016.
Release further reads “According to the applicant, on January 23, Pakistan requested assistance in the investigation of Jadhav's alleged "involvement in espionage and terrorist activities in Pakistan" and, by a Note Verbale of 21 March 2017, informed India that "consular access [to Jadhav would] be considered in the light of the Indian side’s response to Pakistan’s request for assistance in the investigation process".