ISLAMABAD, Dec 4 (APP): Pakistan on Friday categorically rejected the assertions made by Indian Ministry of External Affairs regarding legal proceedings as “incorrect and misleading” in case of Indian Naval Commander Kulbhushan Jadhav.
“It is evident that by casting aspersions on the Indian High Commission’s own legal Counsel, the Indian government is looking for an escape from the legal proceedings in Commander Jadhav case,” Foreign Office spokesperson said in a statement.
He reminded the Indian government that in pursuance of the judgment of International Court of Justice (ICJ), Pakistan had twice invited the Indian High Commission to meet with Commander Jadhav and appoint a lawyer on his behalf to commence the proceedings to review and reconsider his conviction.
However, he said during the course of diplomatic exchanges, the Indian High Commission refused to instruct a lawyer itself, as in their view this would amount to a waiver of India’s sovereign immunity.
As a result, the government of Pakistan was constrained to initiate proceedings for appointment of a state counsel for Commander Jadhav, he added.
To show the discrepancy in the Indian position, the Attorney-General for Pakistan, during the course of proceedings cited the case of Muhammad Ismail an Indian national currently in custody in Pakistan where the Indian High Commission had instructed Noon as its lawyer.
“Contrary to the false statement by the MEA, no attempt was made to link the cases of Commander Jadhav with another Indian prisoner Ismail.
The two cases are and remain entirely distinct. Reference to the case of Mr. Ismail was only for purpose of showing the discrepancy and inconsistency in the Indian position,” the spokesperson remarked.
He reiterated that in line with the ICJ’s judgment, Pakistan had already provided consular access to the Indian High Commission twice and had taken all necessary steps for effective review and reconsideration in the case. The offer of a third consular access is still there, he added.
He again urged the Indian side to desist from the use of its usual diversionary and dilatory tactics and instead take practical steps so that legal proceedings could be duly concluded and full effect could be given to the judgment of ICJ.