LAHORE, May 27: The Lahore High Court chief justice on Monday adjourned hearing of Jamatud Dawa chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed’s petition seeking legal assistance from government before a US court adjudicating a law suit filed by families of US citizens killed in Mumbai terrorist attacks.

A deputy attorney general told the court that the US state and justice departments had already challenged the court’s jurisdiction for issuing summons to Inter Services Intelligence chief and other officials.

The law officer suggested the court should wait for the decision to this effect and requested the court to adjourn the hearing.

The chief justice postponed hearing till Sept 24.

The US court had issued summons to Hafiz Saeed, the then chiefs of ISI Ahmad Shujaa Pasha and Nadeem Taj, and other officials on the law suit filed by relatives of US nationals killed in Mumbai attacks.

US nationals Rabbi Gabriel Noah Holtzberg and his wife Rivka were killed by militants in Mumbai attacks. Their son Mr Moshe who was saved, along with other persons, filed nine claims against banned outfit Lashkar-i-Tayyaba (LeT) led by Hafiz Saeed, Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, Azam Cheema and Sajid Majid as well as the ISI, its former chiefs Nadeem Taj and Lt-Gen Ahmed Shujaa Pasha and two people who it alleges were part of the ISI -- Maj Iqbal and Maj Sameer Ali. They were accused of providing material support for the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

For each of the claims, the plaintiffs sought damages of 75,000 US dollars.

Mr Saeed, through his counsel, pleaded that he was the head of JuD, a ‘charitable organisation’, and had no link with LeT.

The petitioner pleaded that he was a citizen of Pakistan and enjoyed same rights as granted to any other individual. He asserted the government should also defend him in the same manner as it was protecting chiefs of the ISI and other state officials.

Reply sought

The Lahore High Court on Monday sought a reply from the defence secretary on a writ petition moved by an assistant director of the Airport Security Force against the ministry for not promoting him as deputy director despite being listed in seniority list.

Petitioner Gohar Sarfraz Qureshi, presently working in Wapda on deputation, pleaded through counsel that the ministry issued a seniority list wherein he was listed at serial No 35.

However, he said the departmental promotion committee ignored him and promoted the officers (assistant directors) to the rank of deputy directors. He stated that these officers were junior to him.

The petitioner prayed that the decision of the committee be set aside and direction be issued to it to consider his (petitioner) case of promotion afresh and decide the same in accordance with law.

The court issued a notice to the defence ministry through its secretary and sought para-wise comments on the petition within a fortnight.