PAKISTAN PM NAWAZ SHARIF FEELS THE HEAT AS OPPOSITION SLAMS GOVT FOR MISHANDLING JADHAV’S CASE AT ICJ

The article originally appeared on India Today.
Here is it bit modified and extended.

Though Pakistan is trying to put up a defiant face in the wake of the adverse ruling by the International Court of Justice that has stayed Kulbhushan Jadhav’s hanging till it reaches to a conclusion, its opposition has started slamming Nawaz Sharif and his government for mishandling the situation that has led Pakistan to this humiliation. The ICJ has directed Pakistan to “take all measures at its disposal to ensure that Jadhav is not executed pending the final decision in these proceedings”.

Though based on fallacious premises that the Pak legal team at the ICJ was ill-prepared or couldn’t get time to prepare, whereas it is amply clear with today’s observations by the ICJ that Pakistan’s arguments had no legal viability, the opposition in Pakistan is training its guns on Nawaz Sharif and is asking him to reply to the nation on the fiasco.

According to a Dunya News report, main opposition parties of Pakistan, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), have sought Sharif’s reply as well as have demanded him to urgently convene a National Security Committee (NSC) meeting.

PPP’s Sherry Rehman, a former foreign minister of Pakistan, has blamed the Sharif government of ignoring a ‘case pertaining to national security’ as his government ‘government remained stuck in Panama Leaks SC case’.

PTI has blamed the Sharif government of working for vested interests and hidden motives that ultimately proved so damaging. PTI’s chief Imran Khan has said that “the nation demands Sharif family disclose all its financial interests/assets abroad especially with Jindal in India and that “Pakistan cannot afford to have its security jeopardised by the Sharifs’ financial interests abroad”.

This is another line of thought in Pakistan that the Sharif government colluded with the Narendra Modi’s government of India to let it happen as Jadhav was sentenced to death by its military court bypassing the concerns of its civilian establishment which initially believed that the case against Jadhav was based on mere statements and more evidence was needed, as Nawaz Sharif’s Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz had informed the Pak Senate in December 2016. Visit of Indian businessman Sajjan Jindal, who is a common friend of Sharif and Modi and is seen as an interlocutor between the two PMs, to Nawaz Sharif’s personal house last month has only added to this line of thought.

India had approached the ICJ on May 8 and the UN’s judicial arm had agreed to conduct a public hearing of the matter on May 15 staying Jadhav’s hanging till further orders. After the May 15 hearing, the court read out it order yesterday that accepted India’s arguments and prayers and put an interim stay on Jadhav’s death sentence till a final conclusion. Though Pakistan has said that the ICJ has no jurisdiction in the matter and the ruling has not changed Pakistan’s position on Jadhav’s sentence, the ICJ ruling is being seen as an Indian victory and Pakistan’s humiliation in the diplomatic circles.

KULBHUSHAN JADHAV’S CASE

On April 10, a Pak military sentenced Kulbhushan Jadhav to death after convicting him for espionage and sabotage activities in Pakistan. Pakistan claims Jadhav, who allegedly used the alias Hussein Mubarak Patel in Pakistan, was attached to the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). Pakistan arrested Jadhav in March 2016.

The Indian government has maintained that Kulbhushan Jadhav is a former Indian Naval officer turned businessman who was on a routine business trip to Iran when he was abducted by Pakistani intelligence. Reports say he was captured by the Taliban and later sold to the Pakistan Army. India repeatedly demanded consular access to Jadhav but Pakistan always denied it, a point that the ICJ highlighted in its ruling yesterday. The ICJ clearly said that Pakistan had committed a mistake by doing so.

India has also said that Jadhav is innocent and there is no evidence against him and that Pakistsan carried out a sham, secret trial in a military court where no information on charges and evidence was given. India has warned Pakistan of ‘dire consequences’ equalling Jadhav’s death sentence with pre-meditated murder and has time and again asked for the consular access to him.

©SantoshChaubey

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