Pakistan invites India to be part of Sep 3 Kulbhushan Jadhav case proceedings; offers consular access

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Aug 06, 2020, 08.31 PM(IST) Reported By: Sidhant Sibal

File photo: Kulbhushan Jadhav. Photograph:( Others )

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The Pakistani govt in the latest offer on Thursday evening to New Delhi in the Jadhav case also conveyed that New Delhi can appoint a lawyer of its own choice to fight the case

Pakistan has invited India for September 3 Kulbhushan Jhadav proceedings at the Islamabad high court and offered unimpeded and unhindered consular access with no mandatory use of English as a medium for conversation.

The Pakistani govt in the latest offer on Thursday evening to New Delhi in the Jadhav case also conveyed that New Delhi can appoint a lawyer of its own choice to fight the case. 

Also read | Pak court appoints three senior lawyers as amici curiae in Jadhav's case

The Pakistani govt in the proposal for consular access said willing to give "unimpeded" and "unhindered" access without any "glass barrier" and conversation that can happen in any language. This is a departure from the previous stance of the Pakistani govt when it said, the mode of language for talks between Jhadav and Indian Diplomats should be only English.

The Pakistani offer is in light of the Islamabad high court order who while taking up Pakistani govt's petition for appointment of its own lawyer said Indian govt should be "authorized" to arrange a lawyer for the case. The next date of the case is September 3 at 2.30 PM Indian standard time.

Pakistani Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan speaking to media outside the court on Monday said, "Court said, if India wants to engage lawyer, it can do. Federal govt also wants that. Only Pakistani lawyers can be allowed"

In the month of May, Pakistan had come up with an ordinance to implement the International Court of Justice (ICJ) verdict of last year. Under the ordinance, India on behalf of Jhadav can file review for the case. In fact, New Delhi had appointed a Pakistani lawyer to fight the case in Pakistan court but the person was not given relevant legal document. 

India did try to file a petition on 18th July, just 2 days before the ordinance expires, but in absence of power of attorney and supporting legal documents, the could not be done. While Pakistan had called Indian diplomats to meet Jhadav terming as "consular access" before the ordinance expires, the Ministry of external affairs has said that the meet was scuttled by Pakistan authorities.

The MEA said,"The Consular Officers were instructed not to hand over any document to Shri Jadhav. Hence, the Indian Consular Officers could not obtain a Power of Attorney from Shri Jadhav."

India maintains that Jadhav was abducted by Pakistani agencies from Iran and New Delhi was first informed about his custody by Pakistani authorities on 25th March 2016, after which in 2017, Islamabad announced that military has awarded death sentence to him.