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India Has These Four Possible Options If Pakistan Ignores The ICJ Ruling

It's only the first step in a chain of events.

19/05/2017 10:54 AM IST | Updated 19/05/2017 10:58 AM IST
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The verdict by the International Court Of Justice -- putting a stay on Kulbhushan Jadhav's death sentence and asking Pakistan to allow consular access -- has been unanimously hailed by Indian leaders, but it is not the end of the process, only an interim injunction.

Former attorney general Soli Sorabjee told ANI, "It is just a beginning of the good steps. But it is not the victory. This is the preliminary step. Of course it is something we should be happy about, but we should not over-blow it."

It is a possibility that Pakistan may not abide by the direction of the ICJ, but Harish Salve who has argued for India has said that India has plans A and B ready. There are several options before India apart from what Salve has mentioned. Here is what India could do if Pakistan does not comply with the order.

1. Push for his release

In an interview with NDTV, Salve said that India could push for Jadhav's release by citing shocking violation of human rights. However, he added that only adventurous lawyers like him would take up this option.

2. Approach the UN Security Council

A report in The Economic Times suggests that India can approach the United Nations Security Council if Pakistan does not comply with the order. However, there are two problems in this case. One, the security council may refuse to intervene in matters between the two countries. Two, a permanent member of the security council has the power to veto a judgement against itself or its ally.

China, being an ally of Pakistan, can veto the jjudgement, the report says.

3. Stretch the case to buy time

The ICJ directed on 18 May that Jadhav could not be hanged till it delivers a final verdict. Shashank Kumar, a Geneva-based public international lawyer and a former law-clerk at the ICJ, writes in The Wire that it would be in India's best interest to stretch the case for as long as possible.

He adds that if Pakistan objects to the order, the ICJ will address Pakistan's objections before looking at the merits of India's argument in the case. Before a final judgement, the court will schedule hearings in the case.

4. 'Quiet bilateral diplomacy'

Former diplomat and Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyer said 'some quiet bilateral diplomacy' could help the situation. He wrote in his column in NDTV, "Rumour has it that our two National Security Advisers, Doval and Janjua, enjoy a warm personal rapport. If so, then there is no time like the present for them to secretly explore what Pakistan might do, without apparently giving away anything to India, to get Jadhav released or clandestinely shunted back to India."

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