Kulbhushan Jadhav Case: ICJ to Decide Fate of Indian National on Death Row in Pakistan Today
The mother and wife of Mumbai-based former naval officer-turned-businessman Kulbhushan Jadhav met him in Pakistan in 2017. (Photo Credits: IANS)

New Delhi, July 16: The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is expected to deliver its verdict in the case involving Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav today. Kulbhushan Jadhav, a retired Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court for alleged "espionage and terrorism" in April 2017. The ICJ had restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till the case was adjudicated on.

A public sitting will take place at 3 pm (6.30 pm IST) on July 17 at the Peace Palace in The Hague, during which Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, the President of the Court, will read out the verdict, the ICJ said in a statement earlier this month. While India says Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests, Pakistan has declared him a "spy" who was arrested from restive Balochistan province on March 3, 2016. India Sends Note Verbale to Pakistan, Seeks Repatriation of 10 Prisoners, Consular Access to Kulbhushan Jadhav.

Pakistan has been denying India’s repeated requests for consular access to Jadhav at the ICJ, claiming that New Delhi wants to get the information gathered by its “spy”. Ahead of the ICJ's verdict, Pakistan Foreign Office (FO) spokesperson Muhammad Faisal said Islamabad cannot “prejudge” the decision. He, however, said that Pakistan has fully contested the case before the Hague-based ICJ. Pakistan Asks ICJ to 'dismiss' India's Claim for Relief to Kulbhushan Jadhav.

India's case is based on two broad issues — breach of Vienna Convention on consular access and the process of resolution. It also urged the ICJ to annul Jadhav’s death sentence and order his immediate release, saying the verdict by a Pakistani military court based on a “farcical trial” and it failed to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process.

Pakistan on its part claimed that it had a robust judicial system in its country and dismissed India's plea for repatriation of Jadhav as "devoid of legal merit". Pakistan had facilitated a meeting of Jadhav with his mother and wife in Islamabad on December 25, 2017.