Kulbhushan Jadhav's friends: Will fear for his life till he comes back home

Updated: Jul 18, 2019, 08:47 IST | Faizan Khan

Friends and family of Kulbhushan Jadhav elated as International Court of Justice asks Pakistan to review death sentence and provide consular access

Kulbhushan Jadhav's friends: Will fear for his life till he comes back home
File pic of Kulbhushan Jadhav, jailed in Pakistan since 2016

A cheer went up at Kulbhushan Jadhav's childhood home in Lower Parel, as news came that the ICJ had asked Pakistan to review his death sentence. While a childhood friend said Pakistan now has the "golden chance" to mend its ties with India, his family said they feared for his life as long as he was in Pakistan.

Jadhav's childhood friends had gathered at his childhood residence at Prithvi Vandan society on the N M Joshi Marg in Lower Parel to pray for a positive verdict on Wednesday. They erupted in joy as the International Court declared its verdict asking Pakistan to review its death sentence to Jadhav. They distributed sweets and released balloons into the sky to mark their celebration.

Also read: Kulbhushan Jadhav case: Giriraj Singh mocks Pakistan for tweeting 'big win'

One of his childhood friends, Arvind Singh asked Pakistan to grab the opportunity to mend its ties with India by releasing him. Singh had started a campaign for Jadhav's release soon after his detention in Pakistan in 2016.

"Not just his friends but the entire India was behind Jadhav, and I cannot tell you how I am feeling today. I know he is not coming back today itself but this is a big relief for everyone who were praying for him. This is a golden chance for Pakistan and Imran Khan, who is talking about New Pakistan, to release him and build a good relationship with India. We are thankful to our government and the prime minister for putting this case so aggressively before the ICJ," Singh said.

However, the verdict has given little comfort to Jadhav's family members, who still fear for his life. "We are thankful to the efforts of the government but we will be in a fear till he is back home," said ACP Subhash Jadhav, Kulbhushan's uncle.

Now that the ICJ has stayed the death sentence, his friends have vowed to take forward their campaign to seek his release. "Our fight was to get counselor access, now we will continue to fight to bring him back to India," said another friend, Tulsidas Pawar.

Also read: Truth and justice have prevailed: Modi on ICJ verdict

Tushar Shingte, one of the childhood friends, said, "This is a big victory for every Indian against Pakistan, but this is just the beginning and we will fight till the end."

Another friend, Vandana Pawar, said, "We have been fighting for justice for very long and this has come as a sigh of relief, but I am not happy with the verdict."

Also read: Kulbhushan Jadhav case: ICJ asks Pakistan to review conviction, sentencing of Jadhav

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