As Pak’s Jadhav deadline nears, India again asks for unimpeded access | India News

Responding to Pakistan’s “invite” to seek a review of Kulbhushan Jadhav‘s sentencing, and also its second consular access offer, India has asked Islamabad to first provide unimpeded and unconditional consular access if it really wants to fulfil the mandate of the ICJ judgment in the case.
Ahead of the July 20 deadline which Pakistan has set for the review petition, India has asked for access to be provided in the absence of any Pakistan official and also in a room with no audiovisual recording facility.
India is also learnt to have told Pakistan to not insist on the conversation taking place during the meeting only in English. The government wants Pakistan to allow 2 Indian officials to meet Jadhav. While Pakistan has offered consular access for the second time, it continues to deny India any access in private to Jadhav.
The government believes that Pakistan’s offer of second consular access is meaningless, and only meant to make a pretense of acting in line with ICJ judgment, if the failure to allow the same before Jadhav’s alleged confession was recorded is not remedied with private access to Jadhav in line with the ICJ judgment.
Pakistan had last week claimed that Jadhav had refused to file a review petition and instead chosen to follow up on his mercy plea. Describing as farcical Pakistan’s claim, India had said he had been coerced into not going for a review.
Pakistan then stated that the review and reconsideration petition can be filed also by a “legally authorized representative” or a consular officer of the Indian high commission.
Islamabad had on May 20 promulgated an ordinance which called for any review petition in the case to be filed within 60 days. India has described the ordinance as a U-turn (since Pakistan had claimed earlier that its laws were already equipped to allow an effective review) and also a violation of the ICJ judgment as it seeks to create only an “illusion of remedy”.
While India has 5 more days left to seek a review, the government believes that, in the absence of any “remedial” consular access, going for an “inadequate” review under the ordinance could mean playing into the hands of Islamabad. That Pakistan hasn’t allowed a lawyer from abroad to represent him has also been a factor for India.
India has been emphasising before Pakistan that unlike regular cases of consular access where the degree of involvement of an accused in criminal acts is unknown, Jadhav has already been convicted by a military court on the basis of his alleged confession. This is why it insists that consular access can only be remedial or “private” in his case.
The ICJ held Pakistan guilty of violating Article 36 of Vienna Convention by not informing him of his rights after his arrest and by denying India consular access.
Following up on that, the government had mentioned earlier Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) which, as the ICJ held, informs the interpretation of Article 36 of Vienna Convention.
Some of the sections of the Article 14 which, according to Indian authorities, cannot be ignored in the Jadhav case include section 3 (b) To have adequate time and facilities for the preparation of his defence and to communicate with counsel of his own choosing and 3 (g) Not to be compelled to testify against himself or to confess guilt. There’s also 3 (d) which calls for the accused to be tried in his presence, and to defend himself in person or through legal assistance of his own choosing.

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