India on Wednesday welcomed the verdict of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) asking Pakistan to review the death sentence for Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav and granting consular access to him.
The External Affairs Ministry said the 'landmark judgment' validated India's position on the matter 'fully' and asked Pakistan to implement the directive of the ICJ immediately.
In a major victory for India, the ICJ ruled that Pakistan must review the death sentence awarded to Jadhav and asked it to provide consular access to him.
Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry Raveesh Kumar said India will continue to work vigorously for Jadhav's early release and return to India.
Soon after the ICJ delivered its verdict in the high-profile case, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar spoke to Jadhav's family and applauded their courage.
"We welcome the judgement delivered just now by the International Court of Justice in The Hague in favour of India in the case relating to Kulbhushan Jadhav," Kumar said.
Jadhav, 49, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by the Pakistani military court on charges of 'espionage and terrorism' after a closed trial in April 2017. India had approached the ICJ against Pakistan military court's decision in May, 2017 and the world court stayed his execution then.
The ICJ, by a vote of 15-1, upheld India's claim that Pakistan is in egregious violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, 1963 on several counts in the case.
"We also appreciate the direction by the International Court of Justice that Pakistan should review and reconsider the conviction and sentence given to Jadhav by the Pakistani military court," the MEA spokesperson said.
"We note that the court has directed that Pakistan is under an obligation to inform Jadhav without further delay of his rights and to provide Indian consular officers access to him in accordance with the Vienna Convention," he added.
The MEA official said India expected Pakistan to implement the directive of the ICJ immediately.
"This landmark judgement validates India's position on this matter fully," the MEA said.
The verdict in the case comes nearly five months after the bench led by Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf had reserved its decision on February 21 after hearing oral submissions by India and Pakistan.