April 22, 2021 | 10:21 PM IST
Kulbhushan Jadhav

India seeks ‘unconditional access’ to Kulbhushan Jadhav to file review petition

New Delhi has asked Islamabad to provide unconditional consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav, lodged in a Pakistani jail, to file a review petition ahead of the July 20 deadline. India has demanded that two officials be allowed to meet Jadhav and insisted that Pakistan does not force English as the medium of language. 

Last week, Pakistan claimed that Jadhav refused to file an appeal in the Islamabad High Court. However, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has termed Pakistan’s claim as ‘farce’ and stated that Jadhav has been ‘coerced to forego his rights’.  

The MEA Spokesperson, Anurag Srivastava said, “Pakistan’s claim that Jadhav, who is incarcerated in Pakistan’s custody, has refused to initiate review petition is a continuation of the farce that has been in play for the last four years.”

The Ministry said that the approach was Pakistan’s ‘reticence’ to implement ICJ 2019 judgment for an ‘effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence of Jadhav and grant consular access to India without further delay’.

Jadhav is a former Indian Navy officer who was arrested by Pakistani forces in March 2016. He was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of undercover work and terrorism in April 2017. Protesting this, in May 2017, India approached the ICJ against Pakistan for denying consular access to Jadhav, and resultantly, Pakistan had to restrain the execution.

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