Pakistan’s National Assembly passes bill giving Kulbhushan Jadhav right of appeal

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Kulbhushan Jadhav was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court in April 2017 (File)

Islamabad:

Pakistan’s National Assembly has approved a bill allowing Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav to appeal his conviction to the country’s high courts.

The bill seeks to provide an additional right of review and reconsideration by giving effect to the judgment of the International Court of Justice.

The bill was passed by the National Assembly on Thursday after approval by the 21-member standing committee.

It was named “The International Court of Justice (Review and Reconsideration) Act”. The Pakistani government had filed an ordinance in the National Assembly earlier due to the ICJ ruling in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case.

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The law will extend to all of Pakistan and “will come into force immediately.”

According to the bill, the High Court has the power to review and reconsider when the ICJ concerning a foreign national makes an order regarding rights under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations or if a foreign national is injured in with regard to the rights available under the same.

Such a foreign national, either himself, through his authorized representative, or through a consular officer of a mission in his country, may apply to a High Court for a review and review under section 3 of a conviction or conviction order of a military tribunal operating under the Pakistan Army, 1952.

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Earlier this year, a larger bench in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) resumed hearing the case concerning Mr. Jadhav and four other Indian prisoners who were in detention even after serving their respective sentences.

In January, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEA) criticized Pakistan for failing to act on the 2019 ICJ judgment which confirmed India’s claim that the Pakistani regime had committed the grave violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations on several counts concerning Mr. Jadhav. India also lambasted Pakistan for failing to provide consular access to Mr. Jadhav.

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Kulbhushan Jadhav, a retired Indian naval officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court in April 2017. Pakistan claims Mr. Jadhav was arrested in Balochistan in 2016 for espionage. India has dismissed Pakistan’s claims and said it was kidnapped in the Iranian port of Chabahar.

(This story was not edited by The Bharat Express News on Social Platforms.)

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