Pakistan’s National Assembly has approved a bill allowing Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav to appeal his conviction in the high courts of the country.The bill seeks to provide further right of review and reconsideration in giving effect to the judgment of the International Court of Justice.The bill was adopted by the National Assembly on Thursday after approval from the 21-member standing committee.
It has been named ‘International Court of Justice (Review and Re-consideration) Act. The Pakistan government had brought an ordinance in the National Assembly earlier in view of the ICJ’s ruling in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case.
The Act will extend to the whole of Pakistan and shall “come into force at once”.According to the bill, the High Court has the power to review and reconsider where the ICJ in relation to a foreign national passes an order in respect of rights under the Vienna Convention of Consular Relations or a foreign national is aggrieved in respect of the rights available under the same.
Such a foreign national, either himself, through his authorised representative or through a consular officer of a mission of his country, may file a petition before a High Court for review and reconsideration, in terms of Section 3, in regard to an order of conviction or sentence of a Military Court operating under the Pakistan Army, 1952.Earlier this year, a larger bench of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) had resumed hearing of the case related to Jadhav and four other Indian prisoners who were under detention even after completion of their respective sentences.
In January, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had slammed Pakistan for not acting upon the ICJ’s 2019 judgment that had upheld India’s claim of the Pakistani regime committing the grievous violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations on several counts regarding Jadhav. India has also lashed out at Pakistan for failing to provide consular access to Jadhav.