A Pakistani anti-terror court conducting the trial of seven suspects linked to the 2008 Mumbai attacks on Saturday adjourned proceedings till February 4 after defence lawyers raised legal questions about a judicial panel set to visit India to quiz key officials.
Khwaja Haris, the counsel for Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the commander of the banned terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba, submitted an application that raised certain legal questions about the judicial commission which is expected to visit Mumbai next month.
The application questioned the notification issued by the Pakistan government regarding the constitution of the commission and also whether the panel would meet the requirements of Pakistani laws, sources said.
The defence lawyers also challenged the inclusion of a court official in the commission, the sources said.
Anti-terrorism court judge Shahid Rafique had recently included a court official in the commission following a request from the prosecution that an official was required to carry the records of the trial in Pakistan to India.
There were no other proceedings during today's hearing and the judge subsequently adjourned the case till next Saturday.
Khwaja Haris, a former Advocate General of Punjab province, replaced his father Khwaja Sultan Ahmed as Lakhvi's lawyer on Saturday.
Ahmed died last week following an ailment.
The court directed Haris to submit his passport and other documents so that he could join the judicial commission on its upcoming visit to India.
Pakistan's interior minister Rehman Malik recently announced that the commission will travel to India during February 3-6.
It could not immediately be ascertained whether the application filed by Haris would affect the dates for the commission's visit.
The Pakistani commission will interview the Indian police officer who led the probe into the 2008 Mumbai incident, the magistrate who recorded the confession of Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving attacker, and two doctors who conducted the autopsies of nine terrorists killed during the attacks.
The seven Pakistani suspects have been charged with planning, financing and coordinating the attacks that killed 166 people.
Their trial has been stalled for over a year due to various technical reasons, including the admissibility in Pakistani courts of evidence provided by India.