India's Foreign Ministry on Wednesday confirmed the country had submitted its written pleadings to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the case of Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav who was arrested by Pakistan in 2016.
In May 2017, India moved the UN's top court against Pakistan after Jadhav ─ accused of espionage activities in Pakistan ─ was sentenced to death by a Field General Court Martial (FGCM).
India accused Pakistan of violating the Vienna Convention by denying consular access to Jadhav and requested the ICJ to ensure that Jadhav's death sentence is suspended. It also alleged that it was "not informed of Jadhav’s detention until long after his arrest," and learned about his death sentence through the media.
During a hearing at the ICJ on May 15, the court stayed Jadhav's execution. "Pakistan should take all measures to ensure that Mr Jadhav is not executed till the final decision of this court," the court had ruled.
The ICJ is yet to pass the final verdict in the case and had ordered India and Pakistan to file their pleas and counter-arguments by Sept 13 and Dec 13 respectively.
The Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, while responding to a question regarding the development today said that "India has, today, submitted its memorial (written pleadings) to the ICJ in the Jadhav case involving egregious violation of Vienna Convention on Consular Relations 1963 by Pakistan. This is in furtherance of our application filed before the Court on May 8, 2017."
Jadhav's arrest and confessions
Jadhav was arrested in Pakistan on March 3, 2016, during an operation in Balochistan's Mashkel area for his involvement in espionage and sabotage activities against Pakistan. India, however, maintains that Jadhav is a retired naval officer.
In March 2016, shortly after his arrest, Jadhav's confessional statement was aired on television by then head of Inter-Services Public Relations Lt Gen Asim Bajwa, in which the spy admitted his involvement in terror activities in Balochistan and Karachi.
Terming the Indian spy's arrest a 'big achievement', Bajwa said at the time that Jadhav was directly handled by the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) chief, the Indian National Security Adviser and the RAW joint secretary.
"His goal was to disrupt the development of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), with Gwadar port as a special target," Bajwa had said, adding: "This is nothing short of state-sponsored terrorism... There can be no clearer evidence of Indian interference in Pakistan."
"If an intelligence or an armed forces officer of this rank is arrested in another country, it is a big achievement," Bajwa had said, before going on to play a video of Jadhav confessing to Indian intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) involvement in Balochistan separatist activities in Pakistan.
In a second 'confessional video' released by ISPR this year, Jadhav details the crimes he has sought absolution for.
Jadhav was tried by an FGCM under Section 59 of the Pakistan Army Act and Section 3 of the Official Secrets Act of 1923, the statement said.
Jadhav confessed before a magistrate and court that he was tasked by Indian spy agency RAW to plan, coordinate and organise espionage and sabotage activities seeking to destabilise and wage war against Pakistan by impeding the efforts of law enforcement agencies for the restoration of peace in Balochistan and Karachi, according to the ISPR.