India gets another chance to appoint Jadhav’s counsel

Observer Report

The Islamabad High Court has given the Indian government another chance to appoint a lawyer for Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian navy officer arrested on spying charges and sentenced to death by a military court, to ensure a fair trial in the case.

In its written order on Saturday, a three-member high court bench headed by the IHC chief justice said if India has any reservations on the case proceedings then it should approach the court with relevant details.

However, the court does require the Indian government’s ‘meaningful assistance’ in order to comply with the International Court of Justice order regarding the Indian spy, it said, adding that becoming a part of the court proceeding would not affect India’s sovereignty.

The IHC said a letter was written to the Indian government on June 28 but New Delhi did not respond, adding that the court will give India another chance to ensure Jadhav gets a lawyer.
The court will now take up the case on Dec 9.

In August 2020, the IHC formed a three-member larger bench at the government’s request to appoint a lawyer for Jadhav for his appeal against the death penalty awarded to him by a military court.

On Aug 3, 2020, the IHC heard the petition filed by the defence secretary regarding the appointment of a legal representative for Jadhav following orders of the ICJ on the Indian spy’s sentence.

However, despite the passage of multiple deadlines, India has failed to appoint a lawyer in the case.


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