ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court on Thursday observed that the president and the prime minister have no role in the appointment of superior courts judges after the formation of Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) and Parliamentary Committee (PC) under Article 175A.The court turned down government’s plea to summon presidents of Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) and Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) besides advocate generals of provinces in the presidential reference.A five-judge bench led by Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and comprising Justice Tariq Parvez, Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed was hearing the presidential reference, seeking judicial advice over the elevation and appointment of Islamabad High Court judges in view of the 18th and 19th Amendments.Counsel for the president, Wasim Sajjad argued that the prime minister can advise the president on appointment of judges, saying that ‘it is the prime minister who forward summary of judges’ appointment to the president. The bench noted that neither the president nor the prime minister can use discretionary powers in the appointment of superior judiciary judges. Justice Ejaz Afzal said the Parliamentary Committee has the power to reject the recommendation of the commission in view of the Article 175A.Referring to Pakistan People’s Party Senator Raza Rabbani’s speech, Justice Khilji Arif Hussain said: “Mr Rabbani himself stated that power of the president and the PM had been delegated to the PC. Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed questioned whether the government wanted presidential form of system in the country.Raising constitutional points, Sajjad contended that how a stranger could sit in JCP’s meeting as the presence of Justice Anwar Kasi was illegal.He said that the government was seeking the interpretation about the role of the president in judges’ appointments after 19th Amendment. Responding to this, Justice Khilji said that SC has set the role of president in Munir Bhutti case.The counsel said why the authored judge Justice Jawwad S Khawaja had discussed the role of the president when the petitioner did not raise questions in this regard. He went on to add how the president could violate his oath by accepting the illegal recommendations of JCP.Justice Khilji Arif asked him to explain how commission’s recommendations were the violation of the Constitution. Sajjad replied that the chief justice of the Islamabad High Court had declared Justice Riaz Ahmed Khan as a senior judge therefore Justice Kasi could not participate in the JCP meeting.He argued that there is a stipulated role of acting chief justice in the Constitution but not of an acting senior judge. Sajjad said that no other judge could be summoned to fill the seat of a senior judge in case of his or her absence. He added that Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi was not entitled to attend the meeting in lieu of Justice Khan.He maintained that in president’s opinion the Judicial Commission had violated the principle of seniority by allowing Justice Kasi to sit in the meeting. Sajjad said the court had summoned the advocate generals and bar councils’ heads in the Bhutto reference case so they should also be summoned in this case. Justice Khilji said presently there was no need to summon the AGs and the heads of the bar councils.  The bench directed the federation’s counsel to conclude argument on next hearing and adjourned the hearing till today.