IHC allows India more time to appoint counsel for Jadhav


The Islamabad High Court (IHC) allowed India more time to appoint a counsel for captured Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, on Tuesday.

A three-judge bench lead by Justice Athar Minallah, comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb, heard the case by the law ministry regarding designating a lawyer for the Indian spy.

Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Khalid Javed Khan and court’s adviser Advocate Hamid Khan were also present on the occasion.

During the hearing, the AGP said that the court had passed an order on May 5 regarding making one more effort for the appointment of a counsel.

He added that India was conveyed the message as per the court’s order but there has been no response in this regard so far.

Read Navigating the Jadhav conundrum

Khan informed the court that India wanted consular access to Jadhav in a separate room, but that cannot be granted by any country.

He maintained that the authorities couldn’t leave Kulbhushan alone with Indian representatives. “They can cause harm to him even by just shaking hands with him.”

According to the AGP, the Pakistani government wanted complete implementation on the decision of review and reconsideration of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), but India intentionally didn’t want it.

It was in this situation that the federal government had requested for the appointment of a counsel, he added.

“India wants to appoint a counsel from outside but our law disallows this, and so does India’s in its own territory,” he remarked.

At this, Justice Minallah observed that Pakistan wanted to implement the ICJ decision, but India didn’t have an interest in it.

“Would it not be better to give them another opportunity so they could put forth their reservations before the court,” he asked.

Read more IHC asks if India serious in pursuing Jadhav case

The judge asked the AGP to convey the message of the court to the Indian government and the spy.

“Send another reminder to Kulbhushan and the Indian government. If India has any reservations, it may convey them here, or someone from the Indian embassy in Pakistan may convey them. That might bring forth a solution,” the judge said.

Subsequently, the court adjourned the hearing of the case for an indefinite period.

Late last year, Pakistan had categorically rejected “incorrect” and “misleading” assertions made by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs regarding legal proceedings currently taking place in the case of the Indian spy.

The Foreign Office, in a statement, had said it was evident that by casting aspersions on the Indian High Commission’s own legal counsel, the Indian government was looking for an escape from the legal proceedings in the case.

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