ISLAMABAD: A high court in Pakistan on Thursday directed the federal government to give India another chance to appoint a lawyer to represent death-row prisoner Kulbhushan Jadhav as it adjourned hearing for a month.
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) took up the case of appointment of lawyer for Jadhav to hear the review of the death sentence given to him by a Pakistani military court.
Jadhav, the 50-year-old retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of “espionage and terrorism” in April 2017.
Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan told the court that to comply with the orders of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Pakistan granted consular access to India, however, it has not replied to Pakistan’s offer to appoint a lawyer for him.
The IHC, after hearing the arguments, ordered the government to send its order on Jadhav to India and adjourned the hearing until October 3 when the case would be heard again.
Pakistan has introduced a special law to allow Jadhav to get his sentence reviewed as asked by the ICJ. India approached the ICJ against Pakistan for denial of consular access to Jadhav and challenging the death sentence.
The Hague-based ICJ ruled in July last year that Pakistan must undertake an “effective review and reconsideration” of the conviction and sentence of Jadhav and also to grant consular access to India without further delay.
Pakistan claims that its security forces arrested Jadhav from the restive Balochistan province on March 3, 2016 after he reportedly entered from Iran. India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy.