The Delhi High Court on Wednesday dismissed a petition which demanded that the Centre take up the matter of Kulbhushan Jadhav — who has been awarded the death sentence on charges of spying by a court in Pakistan — in the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
"Every possible endeavor is being made by the Indian government to secure the life of its citizen," a division bench of acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Anu Malhotra said while dismissing the plea.
Earlier, the court had heard the arguments of Sanjay Jain, Additional Solicitor General appearing on behalf of the government and Gaurav Kumar Bansal for the petitioner. A petition had been filed on Tuesday in the Delhi High Court demanding immediate legal help to Kulbhushan Jadhav. It also demanded that the Centre should be directed to take up the matter in the ICJ.
The petition, filed by social activist Rahul Sharma through his counsel Gaurav Kumar Bansal, had also demanded that consular access be given to Jadhav who has been illegally detained in Pakistan. It also added that Jadhav had been denied a fair trial and, as a result, the sentence of capital punishment meted out to him was unjust.
The petition also annexed a press release issued by the Inter Services Public Relations, Pakistan, the only media wing of the Pakistan Armed Forces, which broadcasts and co-ordinates military news and information to the outer world. The petitioner claimed that the copy of the order on the sentence has still not been provided to the Indian authorities.
"The Government of Pakistan as well as its authorities have neither provided the copy of the judgment passed by the Pakistan Military Court nor have provided any kind of detail like case number, case title, court details etc," said the petition.
It added that if the sentence is executed it would amount to "Premeditated Murder" and the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) have so far dealt the matter through "diplomatic representations" and "negotiations."
The plea also cited media reports which said that no legal help was provided to Jadhav by the Pakistan government despite requests from the MHA and MEA. It also demanded that protocol be issued for the release of Indians abducted or kidnapped in other countries.
A former naval officer, Kulbushan Jadhav had been caught and tried in Pakistan. He received the death sentence after the Pakistan Military Court found him guilty of spying.