Pakistan said on Monday that India did not provide answers to the key questions it raised at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) about Kulbhushan Jadhav, who has been sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court. The four-day hearing in the Jadhav case opened Monday at the ICJ headquarters in The Hague amidst heightened tensions between India and Pakistan following one of the worst terror attacks in Jammu and Kashmir by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terror group that killed at least 41 CRPF soldiers.
On the first day of hearing, India 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 case" hopelessly fails to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process. Pakistan's Foreign Office spokesperson Mohammad Faisal in a video message posted on social media said that Indian arguments had nothing new.
"There was nothing new in India's argument on the issues which we raised, like our question about how he (Jadhav) got the passport with name of Hussain Mubarak Patel and how he travelled 17 time to India using that passport," he said. Faisal said India also did not show any document like pension book or bank statement to prove that Jadhav had retired from the Indian Navy.
He said India demanded "acquittal, release and return" of Jadhav but "it had no answer to the question that how justice will be done with thousands of people who were killed due to his sabotage and terrorist activities." Faisal said Pakistan would submit its argument on Tuesday.
The ICJ set a timetable for public hearings from February 18 to 21. It is expected that the ICJ decision may be delivered by the summer of 2019.
Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017. His sentencing evoked a sharp reaction in India. India moved the ICJ in May the same year for the "egregious violation" of the provisions of the Vienna Convention by Pakistan by repeatedly denying New Delhi consular access to the 48-year-old Indian national.
(With inputs from agencies.)