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'That Match Was Fixed': Imran Khan Blames Sharif for Round 1 Loss to India

Updated: May 20, 2017, 12:45 PM IST
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New Delhi: The International Court of Justice (ICJ) verdict on Kulbhushan Jadhav couldn’t have come at a worse time for Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. Already under fire over the Panama Papers leaks, Sharif now finds the blame for Round 1 loss at the ICJ at his doorstep.

“When Narendra Modi was sworn-in as India’s Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif went to attend the ceremony, but he did not meet Hurriyat leaders…. It seems fixed. They must have fixed this beforehand,” said opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan.

“Now, Sharif will say that the matter was not in our hands. It was with the ICJ. He is trying to escape from it,” the cricketer-turned-politician told a Pakistani news channel.

Apart from the opposition, several legal experts too have questioned the strategy adopted by Pakistan, asking why it accepted the global court's jurisdiction. The choice of Khawar Qureshi, who represented Pakistan's case before the ICJ, is also under question. The Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) had recommended some other counsel, The Express Tribune reported.

The Sharif government will now constitute a new team of lawyers to "vigorously" present its case at the ICJ.

The country has reportedly filed a fresh plea in the Hague-based court, the UN's highest judicial body, seeking a re-hearing in the case.

ALSO READ | 'We Made a Mistake', Says Pakistani Media After Jadhav Verdict

Dunya News said Pakistan was set to re-challenge the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice after it
stayed the execution of Jadhav till proceedings were pending.

Following the verdict, news channels and websites across Pakistan called Pakistan’s strategy a “mistake”, saying the jurisdiction argument was “weak and damaging”.

ALSO READ | Day After ICJ Stayed Jadhav's Execution, Pakistan Seeks Re-hearing: Reports

Dawn Newspaper’s website said the verdict had caused “shock and disappointment” in Pakistan.

Retired Pakistan judge Shaiq Usmani told that Pakistan had “shot itself in the foot”.

“It’s Pakistan’s mistake to have appeared there. They shouldn’t have attended (the ICJ hearing).” He further said that the proceedings against Jadhav will continue in Pakistan, except that he could not be executed till the ICJ gave its verdict.

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