With the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the primary judicial organ of the United Nations, temporarily staying the death sentence of former Indian Naval officer and alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav by a Pakistan military court, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday said the decision is historic in a way that India took the command to save its citizen, adding it has ensured its position at the international stage.
"It's an important decision. It is historic in the sense that the Government of India took everything in its command to approach the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Under Prime Minister Narendra Modi there has been a clear indication and effort that Indian citizens are valued and the government will do everything at its command to reach out to them and protect them," BJP leader Nalin Kohli told ANI.
He further said that the role of Harish Salve as an eminent and senior advocate has to be appreciated for putting forcefully India's point of view at the ICJ.
"What has emerged today is a clear rejection of Pakistan's preliminary objections with regard to the jurisdictions of the ICJ to adjudicate on this matter. A dispute existed, as the court has said with regard to the circumstances of the arrest, with the lack of consular access, and all of it clearly falls into the zone of what Pakistan needs to comply with the regard to the Vienna Convention," he asserted.
Kohli added that there is nothing in the Vienna Convention that excludes providing consular access or says that Jadhav's rights are to be restricted under the Convention.
"The argument of Pakistan has also been rejected with regard to a bilateral agreement between India and Pakistan preventing India from approaching the ICJ. The court has unanimously asked Pakistan to ensure that Jadhav is not executed," he said.
Kohli further said that it is an important day for Jadhav and his family, adding that this is one more step further in ensuring that justice is done for the formal Naval officer.
Echoing similar sentiments, another BJP leader G.V.L. Narasimha Rao said the verdict of the ICJ vindicated India's position in every manner and has completely rebuffed and rejected Pakistan's attempt to claim that the court has no jurisdiction over the matter.
"Pakistan has run a sham trial and convicted Jadhav without giving any consular access to India despite 16 requests made. Today by taking the matter to the International court, and ensuring that we claim our rights on the international stage, Prime Minister Modi has sent a signal to the entire world that every citizen's life matters to us and India shall not bow down countries like Pakistan which has denied the basic rights to our citizens," Rao asserted.
He further said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi deserves entire country's congratulations for taking a bold step and winning this case at the international level.
"The trial will continue but Jadhav has received huge reprieve. Pakistan cannot take away with these sham court proceedings anymore," he added.
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy said it's a complete victory at this stage, although it is called as a prima facie stage but the stay order has been issued and Pakistan has been clearly told that it should not execute Jadhav till the court has decided the matter and also the consular access has to be provided.
"This is a big defeat for Pakistan. Now the court can take any amount of time to give a final judgment. We may also take other steps afterward," Swamy told ANI.
In a major reprieve to India, the ICJ, the primary judicial organ of the United Nations, stayed the death sentence awarded to Jadhav by the Pakistan military court, citing that both - India and Pakistan - were bound by the Vienna Convention and that the rights invoked by New Delhi under the Vienna Convention were plausible.
Justice Ronny Abraham of the ICJ read out the much-awaited verdict and asserted that the case was indeed debatable, while also adding that the ICJ had prime facie jurisdiction in the case.
Abraham added that under the Vienna Convention, India should have received consular access to seek justice for the former Indian Naval officer.
The only condition under which Jadhav now stands to face execution is if Pakistan does not comply with the ICJ's decision. India can then go to the Security Council, which may then decide upon measures to be taken to give effect to the judgement.
The UN charter entails that 'each member of the United Nations undertakes to comply with the decision of the International Court of Justice' and 'if any party to a case fails to perform the obligations, the other party may have recourse to the Security Council.'
A Pakistan military court had awarded the death sentence to former Indian naval officer Jadhav on April 10 for alleged "espionage and subversive activities."
However, India, after being denied consular access for 16th time, dragged Pakistan to the ICJ on May 8 for violating the Vienna Convention.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)