Harish Salve, among the country's highest paid lawyers, is charging ₹1 to fight India's case at the International Court of Justice against the death penalty awarded to alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav by Pakistan, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has revealed.
While India had expressed fears that Pakistan could execute Jadhav even before the hearing was over, Islamabad said it was false that Pakistan would execute Jadhav immediately since he was entitled to a clemency period of 150 days (5 months) provided to him.
Pakistan's lawyer Khawar Qureshi claimed India has not proved that Jadhav is its national and that consular access can not be given.
The Indian camp sounds fairly confident of a favourable judgement which the president of he ICJ said would be delivered as soon as possible in an open hearing.
India and Pakistan went face-to-face at International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Monday in the matter of death sentence awarded to Jadhav by a Pakistani military court. India has also questioned the authenticity of the "confession" video uploaded by Pakistan as proof against Jadhav, saying it was made using methods of torture. India, in its appeal, has asserted that Mr Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran, where he was doing business after he retired from the Indian Navy.
India has denied however Jadhav was a spy, and last week lodged a protest at the ICJ accusing Pakistan of "egregious violations of the Vienna convention".
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He argued that every country had undeniable right to punish the terrorists and the ICJ could not intervene in criminal cases. "Else, it will be a violation of the Vienna Convention".
Jadhav was arrested in Balochistan in March 2016 and in April this year, a military court sentenced him to death.
Mr Mittal insisted Pakistan had failed to respond to Indian demands for information about the case, snubbing requests for documents including the charge sheet, and had failed to provide Jadhav with consular access. Islamabad also advocated an "expedited hearing which would dispel any suggestion for the need for provisional measures", adding that "Pakistan would be content for the court to list the application of India for hearing within six weeks".
The lawyer claimed that India had on September 8, 1974 told the ICJ to exclude itself from its jurisdiction in disputes with Pakistan and from any interpretation and obligation of multi-lateral treaties. We have a long border with India where millions of people reside.
Dismissing India's contention that it invoked the jurisdiction of the court because of the "imminent" possibility of execution of Jadhav, Qureshi said the court was bound to settle disputes between countries peacefully and not waste time on issues sought to be raised for political objective.
Pakistan claims to have arrested Jadhav from its restive Balochistan province.