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News of the Day – 18 July 2019
- July 18, 2019
- Posted by: Shivam
- Category: NEWS Worth To Read
News of the Day – 18 July 2019
Ahead of floor test, Karnataka Cong leader says he will withdraw resignation
In some relief to the embattled coalition government in Karnataka, Congress MLA Ramalinga Reddy Wednesday said he has decided to withdraw his resignation from the assembly and will vote in favour of the trust vote to be sought by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy.
I will take part in the assembly session tomorrow and vote in favour of the party. I will continue to remain in the party and serve as MLA, he told PTI here.
Reddy, a former minister, is among the 13 Congress and three JDS MLAs who have tendered their resignations while two independent legislators have withdrawn their support to the 14-month old Kumaraswamy government, leaving it tottering on the brink of collapse.
The survival of the Congress-JD(S) government hangs precariously on the eve of the trust vote with the Supreme Court Wednesday holding that the 15 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs, who had moved it, cannot be compelled to participate in the proceedings of the ongoing assembly session.
While most of the rebel MLAs have been staying in Mumbai, Reddy chose to be in the city amid reports that Congress was trying to pacify him.
The party had also left him out while moving the Assembly Speaker for disqualification of the rebel MLAs, saying he was an “exception.” Reddy too had maintained he would remain in Congress and he has resigned only from the assembly.
Hours ahead of the floor test Thursday, Reddy said he would withdraw his resignation letter submitted to the Speaker on July 6.
The other rebel MLAs camping in Mumbai said there was no question of stepping back on their resignations or attending the session.
If the resignations of the 15 MLAs are accepted or if they stay away from the assembly, the ruling coalitions tally will plummet to 102, reducing the government to a minority.
ICJ tells Pakistan to review KulbhushanJadhav death penalty
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Wednesday ruled that Pakistan had violated former Indian naval officer KulbhushanJadhav’s right to consular access and called for a review of the death sentence handed to him by a military court at an appropriate forum of Islamabad’s choice.
In a ruling seen as a significant victory for India’s efforts to prevent the execution of the 49-year-old, the UN’s principal court ruled that a continued stay of Jadhav’s death sentence was an “indispensable condition” for an effective “review and reconsideration” of his conviction.
Noting the review could be done in various ways, ICJ left the “choice of means” to Pakistan. The court, based in The Hague, Netherlands, said the review must be unconditional and lead to a result. It also called on Pakistan to take all measures for an effective review, including “enacting appropriate legislation”.
Jadhav was arrested by Pakistani security agencies in Balochistan on March 3, 2016, and charged with involvement in spying and subversive activities. In April 2017, Pakistan announced that Jadhav had been given the death sentence by a military court.
Hours after the ICJ verdict, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: “We welcome today’s verdict in the ICJ. Truth and justice have prevailed. Congratulations to the ICJ for a verdict based on extensive study of facts. I am sure KulbhushanJadhav will get justice. Our Government will always work for the safety and welfare of every Indian.”
External affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar described it as a “landmark judgment” that validated India’s position and said: “We will continue to work vigorously for KulbhushanJadhav’s early release and return to India.”
Kumar said ICJ, by a vote of 15-1, upheld India’s stance that Pakistan was in “egregious violation” of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
“We note 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. We expect Pakistan to implement the directive immediately,” he added.
External affairs minister S Jaishankar tweeted: “Spoken to #Kulbhushan’s family. Applaud their courage. SatyamevaJayate.”
It was not clear from Pakistan’s initial reactions if it would abide by the ICJ’s verdict. Pakistan’s Foreign Office announced it will “proceed as per law” and reiterated its allegations that Jadhav was involved in espionage, sabotage and terror acts that it claimed were a “clear case of Indian state terrorism”.
India has rejected the allegations against Jadhav and said he was kidnapped by Pakistani operatives from the Iranian port of Chabahar, where he was running a business. In May 2017, New Delhi petitioned ICJ, which stayed Jadhav’s execution.
However, ICJ ruled on Wednesday that it could not uphold India’s demand to annul the Pakistani military court’s death sentence and direct Islamabad to release and repatriate Jadhav. The 16-judge bench said it was not the conviction and sentencing of Jadhav that violated Article 36 of the Vienna Convention relating to consular access.
ICJ emphasised that the review of Jadhav’s case by Pakistan must be effective as the outcome of his mercy petition to the Pakistan Army chief was not known, and no evidence was submitted to the court on the presidential clemency procedure.
ICJ noted that Pakistan had stated during arguments that its high courts were competent to carry out a review. But it also observed Article 199 of Pakistan’s Constitution had been interpreted by the Supreme Court as limiting the availability of such a review for a person like Jadhav, who is subject to the Pakistan Army Act. “Thus, it is not clear whether judicial review of a decision of a military court is available on the ground that there has been a violation of the rights set forth in Article 36, paragraph 1, of the Vienna Convention,” the verdict said.
The verdict, however, added that Pakistan “contends that its domestic legal system provides for an established and defined process whereby the civil courts can undertake a substantive review of the decisions of military tribunals, in order to ensure procedural fairness has been afforded to the accused, and that its courts are well suited to carrying out a review and reconsideration that gives full weight to the effect of any violation of Article 36 of the Vienna Convention”.
Rahul Gandhi of the Congress welcomed the verdict. “My thoughts tonight are with KulbhushanJadhav, alone in a prison cell in Pakistan & with his distraught family for whom this verdict brings a rare moment of relief, joy & renewed hope, that he will one day be free to return to his home in India,” he tweeted.
Lawyer Harish Salve, who appeared for India in the case, said: “I see this as a sense of relief, gratification. I see this as something which we are very happy with. It is now the moment for us to help Jadhav get justice.”
While the 16-judge bench was unanimous in ruling that the UN’s principal court had jurisdiction to hear India’s petition, the seven other conclusions were endorsed by 15 of the judges on the panel led by ICJ president Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, and opposed by Pakistan’s ad hoc judge Tassaduq Hussain Jillani.
These seven conclusions included the rejection of Pakistan’s objections to the admissibility of India’s petition and violation of Jadhav’s rights to consular access under the Vienna Convention by Pakistan as it failed to notify him and the Indian government without delay of his detention. This, the judges ruled, deprived India of the right to communicate with Jadhav, and have access to him in detention and arrange for his legal representation. The bench concluded that Pakistan was under an obligation to inform Jadhav without further delay of his rights and to provide Indian consular officers access to him.
The bench further held the “appropriate reparation in this case consists in the obligation of… Pakistan to provide, by the means of its own choosing, effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence” of Jadhav.
It also declared a “continued stay of execution constitutes an indispensable condition for the effective review and reconsideration” of Jadhav’s death sentence.
(Source – Hindustan Times)