ISLAMABAD - A three-judge bench of Supreme Court Monday questioned the locus standi of Chief Secretary Punjab for filing an appeal regarding the eligibility of Sharif brothers, as it is an electoral dispute between two parties. During the arguments of Advocate General Punjab Khawaja Haris before the bench comprising Justice Moosa K Leghari, Justice Sakhi Hassan Bukhari and Justice Sheikh Hakim Ali, the question arose how the Chief Secretary could appear before the court instead of concerned party to pursue an electoral dispute. The bench is seized with hearing of a set of appeals regarding the eligibility of PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif and Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif. These appeals are arising out of a Lahore High Court ruling of June 23 last year that disqualified Nawaz Sharif and referred the issue of eligibility of Shahbaz Sharif back to Election Commission while conditionally allowing the former to work as Chief Minister of Punjab till the final disposal of controversy. An application seeking formation of a larger bench, comprising those judges who had not taken oath under the second PCO of former President Musharraf, to decide the Sharif brothers' case is also before the bench. Continuing his arguments in favour of Sharif brothers, Advocate General Punjab Khawaja Haris told the bench that the Chief Secretary was the legal head of the province and had the right to represent the province in the court. At this stage, Justice Sheikh Hakim Ali asked Khawaja Haris how a Chief Secretary, being a government servant, could become a party in the case to save a particular person. The court further expressed curiosity regarding the legal status of a Chief Secretary while asking whether the officer could indulge into safeguarding or breaking a provincial government by filing petitions. Haris, however, stated that once someone was notified as member of the provincial assembly, the member became a liability for the government and that was why the Advocate General was present before the court. He also stated that Chief Secretary was a government employee and it made no difference to the latter whether who was in power. Haris also told the bench that Shahbaz Sharif was first declared qualified, later elected as member of Punjab Assembly and then chosen as Chief Minister of the province. Justice Sheikh Hakim Ali observed dispute over eligibility or non-eligibility did not mean the electoral process was controversial. Haris stated that nomination papers of Shahbaz Sharif were rejected in 2002 on the allegation that the signatures on it were fake but there was no charge of any default on his part. Directing the Advocate General Punjab to complete his arguments by 11:30am today (Tuesday), the court asked Haris to cite rulings of superior court where it had upheld the status of provincial Chief Secretary in any legal controversy between two parties. The apex court will today (Tuesday) continue the hearing of Sharif brothers eligibility case where Advocate Ashtar Ousaf Ali, the counsel for Speaker Punjab Assembly, is likely to take the rostrum after the conclusion of arguments by Khawaja Haris.