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Wednesday Oct 11 2017

Jadhav case: Pakistan nominates ex-CJ Jilani as ad-hoc judge at ICJ


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has nominated former chief justice Tassaduq Hussain Jilani as ad-hoc judge at the International Court of Justice, a spokesman for its Foreign Office said Wednesday, to defend his side in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case.

The spokesman said the ICJ has been informed of former chief justice's nomination in the case. The court will now apprise India of Jilani's nomination as ad-hoc judge, the spokesman added.

Jadhav, a 46-year-old retired Indian Navy officer, was captured in Balochistan in March 2016 by Pakistan security forces and tried in a military court which sentenced him to death for espionage and subversive activities. 

Earlier, sources informed Geo News the decision to appoint the former chief justice was taken after consultation with all the stakeholders.

The prime minister endorsed the decision by signing a summary regarding Jilani's nomination as the ad-hoc judge to represent Pakistan, which was sent to him by the Ministry of Law.

Under Article 13 of the International Court of Justice, Pakistan can send an ad-hoc judge. The team of lawyers to defend Pakistan’s side was previously led by renowned lawyer Khawar Qureshi.

Justice Jillani is the cousin of former foreign secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani. He was nominated to the Lahore High Court bench by former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in the 1990s. 

He also authored the Supreme Court’s judicial anthem and was among the Supreme Court judges who had refused to take oath under the provisional constitutional order on November 3, 2007. 

He became as the chief justice of the Supreme Court in December 2013 and retired in July 2014. 

Earlier this month, a high-level meeting was held, headed by Attorney General Ashtar Ausaf Ali, to discuss Pakistan's strategy and responses to India’s 22-page report submitted before the ICJ. 

In the meeting, representatives of the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Law and Justice, as well as other stakeholders, were present.

India approached the ICJ on May 18 against Jadhav's sentence and the international court restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case.

The ICJ had asked Pakistan to submit its written response or 'memorial' by December 13 before the court could start further proceedings.