India wants Queen’s Counsel for Jadhav; Harish Salve fits the bill | India News

India has asked Pakistan for appointment of a Queen’s Counsel (QC) as lawyer for Kulbhushan Jadhav in the ICJ-mandated, ongoing review of his death sentence in Islamabad High Court.
Senior advocate and former Solicitor General Harish Salve is the natural choice for India as he’s the only Indian lawyer to be appointed Queen’s Counsel in recent times.
As per its legal definition, Queen’s Counsel is a barrister, or advocate, appointed Counsel to the Crown on the recommendation of the Lord Chancellor and is entitled to sit within the Bar of the court and wear a silk gown.
Salve, who represented Jadhav at ICJ too, was appointed Queen’s Counsel for the courts of England and Wales in January this year. While he still practises in India, he’s based out of London mostly now.
While Islamabad has rejected the demand for an Indian lawyer, saying that only a lawyer with licence to practice in Pakistan can represent Jadhav, India believes that a Queen’s Counsel may be a way out of this impasse if Pakistan is serious about the Jadhav review.
Salve’s defence of Jadhav saw the ICJ asking Pakistan for an effective review and reconsideration of the death sentence awarded to him by a military court and also upholding India’s demand for consular access to Jadhav.
As Salve himself explained in an interview to ToI earlier this year, the title of QC is recognised all over the world.
“People know you have to be of a particular class to be recognised by the English system as a QC, so it gives you that kind of stature. Otherwise, how does a client in the Middle East or Malaysia know you are a good lawyer? I am given to understand there is no other Indian citizen practising in both countries who is a QC, but I am not sure, as that would require a lot of research,” he had said.
As a directive by the Islamabad High Court, Pakistan had asked India to appoint a lawyer and join the court proceedings. India has laid down 3 conditions though for doing so. First, Pakistan must allow an Indian lawyer to represent Jadhav. Second, India must be allowed access to all relevant case documents and, third, unconditional or private access to Jadhav.
Meanwhile, reports from Islamabad said Tuesday, that Pakistan’s Parliament had extended for 4 months an ordinance that allowed Jadhav to file an appeal against his conviction in the high court.
Dawn News reported that The International Court of Justice (Review and Reconsideration) Ordinance promulgated in May was set to expire on September 17 but the National Assembly on Monday through a voice vote extended it for four months.

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