Pakistan on Wednesday named former chief justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani as its ad-hoc judge for the International Court of Justice’s panel hearing the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav, sentenced to death for alleged involvement in espionage.
Islamabad resorted to the move as the 12-member tribunal hearing Jadhav’s case has an Indian member – Dalveer Bhandari, a former Supreme Court judge.
Article 31 of the ICJ’s statute states that if a panel includes “a judge of the nationality of one of the parties, (the other) party may choose a person to sit as judge”. An ad hoc judge can also be chosen if the panel includes “no judge of the nationality” of the two parties, according to the article.
Jilani, senior lawyer Makhdoom Ali Khan and former Jordanian premier Awn Shawkat Al-Khasawneh, who served as an ICJ judge for more than a decade, were considered for the position.
“Today, the government of Pakistan has communicated to the International Court of Justice its designation of Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, a former chief justice of Pakistan, to be its judge ad hoc in the Jadhav case,” the Foreign Office said in a statement.
Jillani served as a judge in the Supreme Court during 2004-13 and as the chief justice from December 2013 to July 2014. He was among the judges who refused to take an oath of allegiance to former dictator Pervez Musharraf after he imposed emergency in November 2007.
His appointment coincided with Pakistan starting the process of filing its response to India’s “memorial” or submission to the ICJ against the conviction of Jadhav by a Pakistani military court. The court in The Hague has asked Pakistan to submit its response by December 13.
The ICJ has stayed the execution of Jadhav till it gives its final ruling in the case.
Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death on April 10 for alleged involvement in spying and subversive activities. The Pakistani military has said he was arrested in the restive Balochistan province in March last year.
India has dismissed the charges against Jadhav and said he was abducted from the Iranian port of Chabahar, where he had business interests.
The Pakistan Army said last week its chief was close to a decision on a mercy petition filed by Jadhav after he was denied clemency by a military court.__Hindustan Times