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India on Thursday said the International Court of Justice order was an "essential first step" in ensuring justice for alleged spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, and he should "be safe" till the court's final decision comes.
"The provisional relief which India has been granted on its request, it constitutes an essential first step in ensuring justice for Mr. Jadhav," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said at a briefing, hours after the ICJ asked Pakistan not to execute the alleged spy till final hearing of the matter.
He called it a "matter of great relief" as it meant that Jadhav should not be executed till a final decision comes, and welcomed it.
"We hope that it will help remedy the egregious violations of Jadhav's rights and also the violation of international conventions by Pakistan in this matter," he said.
"This is a unanimous decision of the highest court, there is no ambiguity in this judgement. It is clear that as long as a final decision does not come Jadhav should be safe," he said.
Asked if he expected Pakistan to follow the order, the spokesperson said the order was internationally legally binding.
"I hope the authorities in Pakistan have heard what the President of ICJ said while reading his order... He said very clearly this order creates a legally binding international obligation."
"India is a law abiding country, we abide by international law, we will believe that all members of the international community should follow the internationally legally binding orders," he said, adding: "At this stage I would not like to speculate whether they will follow or not."
Asked if Jadhav's family will again apply for a Pakistani visa, Baglay said he was not sure if their earlier application has been rejected, but added that the visa has not been granted as yet.
"I am not aware if there is a decision on the first application, I know they have not got the visa yet but if there is a need to apply again I don't know," he said.
To a question on seeking consular access for Jadhav again, he said: "We have demanded consular access 16 times, they (Pakistan) can give it any time."
He also refused to comment on what may eventually be the fate of the case.
He said: "This matter is subjudice, what will happen in the future, what course the matter will take, I think it is best to not go into those things. The court is seized of the matter. It has said clearly what Pakistan should do till final decision of the court comes."
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)