ISLAMABAD - Hearing the Panama leaks case, the Supreme Court yesterday observed that the political parties are polarised and they all seek their own kind of justice.
The political parties would accept only such verdict as serves their own interests, remarked Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa while heading a five-judge larger bench.
Sheikh Rashid, one of the petitioners and head of Awami Muslim League, in is arguments quoted example of Hazrat Umar (RA) and said that Nawaz Sharif was not bigger than the 2nd Caliph of Islam. “This is a very important case and I hope justice would be done in this case,” he added.
Justice Khosa asked him what does he meant by word justice. “If a court order comes in their (political parties) favour it is termed justice but if it’s against them, it’s not justice (according to them),” he observed.
Sheikh Rashid termed Qatari letter some novel of popular novelist Razia Butt, and said it has proved 1122 rescue service for the Sharif family. At that the courtroom burst into laughter. Justice Azmat ordered silence.
Sheikh Rashid demanded reinvestigation of Hudaibiya Papers Mills case and asked the court to summon Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar as the latter had given a statement about laundering of money by the Sharif family in Hudaibiya Mills case. He said that Dar could tell about the money trail in the matter of London flats.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf counsel Naeem Bokhari concluded his arguments. He said Sharif family was required to establish all the transactions about their businesses in UAE and Jeddah, and ownership of Mayfair properties in London. He contended there is contradiction in PM Nawaz Sharif’s speeches.
Bukhari reiterated that Maryam Nawaz, daughter of Nawaz Sharif, remained dependent on her father in the past, even after her marriage as her spouse does not have any source of income. To which a member of the bench Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan observed that no person can be declared dependent merely because of their receiving gifts from their guardian.
Naeem Bukhari contended that the prime minister has to explain about the gifts, which he had given to his daughter Maryam Safdar and received from his son Hassan Nawaz. The counsel again emphasised that Sharif family purchased London flats between 1993 and 1996 and the respondents would have to satisfy the court on Qatari connection.
Justice Azmat observed so far there is no direct evidence or document to connect respondents 1, 6, 7 and 8 with the UK properties before 2006.
Justice Khosa told Bukhari that he had raised these questions repeatedly, which the court had attended.
When Bukhari sensed he did not have any more arguments, he begged to leave saying that he had backache and has to go to doctor for injection.
PTI leader Shireen Mizari complained that they reached Supreme Court at 8:30 and found the courtroom locked but when it was opened, they saw intelligence agencies personnel sitting on the seats. She contended that they occupy the seats for the PML-N leaders, because when they come they get up.
Sheikh Rashid in his arguments also said the National Accountability Bureau had failed to file appeal against the Lahore High Court judgment which bared the Bureau from reinvestigating the Hudaibiya Paper Mills case in which Ishaq Dar had admitted money laundering by Sharif family.
“If an appeal had been filed against the High Court verdict in the HPML then we would not need to come before the Supreme Court in Panama Leaks matter,” he said. He requested the apex court to issue directives for reinvestigation in the HPML case, adding that he has witnessed in different occasion in life that a large number of people were executed on the basis of statement recorded under Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) Section 164 but no action had been taken in HPML case.
The bench turned down the request of Jamaat-e-Islami to withdrew or amend its petition. Taufiq Asif, appearing on behalf of JI Ameer Sirajul Haq, said he wanted to give argument against the PM Nawaz. The court said the JI has not made Nawaz Sharif respondent in the petition; rather, they have sought a general probe against all those whose name have appeared in the Panama leaks.
Asif then requested that he should be allowed to amend the petition. However, the court declined it. He then asked the court to permit him to withdraw the earlier petition and file fresh application. Justice Ejaz observed that he does not need court’s permission to file new petition, while his original petition remains pending.
Makhdoom Ali Khan, counsel for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, at the beginning of his argument asked the court to look the prayer made in the PTI chief’s petition. He contended that the PTI sought six directions. One is to recover the alleged looted money through which London flats were purchased. Another is that the NAB should be directed to investigate all the cases of mega corruption, he said, pointing out that the PTI plea was not restricted to his client.
Justice Khosa said the bench’s primary focus was the four flats. “What had been happening prior to 2006, you have to explain all the things,” Justice Khosa told the counsel.
Makhdoom further pleaded that the PTI in their petition asked for investigating the Sharif family but it had not made respondents the family members other than the PM and his children and son-in-law.
Justice Asif Khosa asked him to focus on Nawaz Sharif, saying the Supreme Court can summon anyone when required.
The hearing was adjourned until today. Makhdoom would continue his arguments.
This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 12-Jan-2017 here.