LAHORE  - Lahore High Court Chief Justice Muhammad Yawar Ali Saturday reconstituted a full bench for hearing of petitions against ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and other PML-N leaders for their alleged speeches against the judiciary.

The three-member bench would be headed by Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi and comprising Justice Justice Atir Mahmood and Justice Shahid Mubeen. The bench will resume hearing on Monday.  The previous was dissolved before taking up the petitions as Justice Shahid Hassan who was the member of it was transferred from principal seat to Multan. The CJP reconstituted the full bench by replacing him with Justice Shahid Mubeen.

Amna Malik, Munir Ahmad and other citizens had moved the petitions against Nawaz and others over their contemptuous speeches against judges.  They also made Pemra party in the petitions, saying that it also failed to fulfill its responsibility willfully. They alleged that the TVs had been broadcasting contemptuous speeches of the respondents but the authority did not take any action despite the court orders.

They said Pemra had lost its independence as regulator rather became a subordinate body of the government.  Pemra officials, they said, must realize that they had not been the working for the PML-N but were the officials of the state.

Division bench dissolved

A Lahore High Court division bench hearing the NAB cases has been dissolved according to the new duty roster. The bench was hearing the case of former LDA DG Ahad Khan Cheema against his arrest by NAB in Ashiyana Housing scheme.  According to the new roster, a new bench comprising Justice Muhammad Qasim Khan and Justice Muhammad Tariq Abbasi would hear the cases from April 2 till June 30. In Ahad Khan Cheema’s petition, his counsel Advocate Azam Nazir Tarar had contended that the NAB had arrested him by violating its own laws and without any justification. He had said Cheema fully cooperated with the bureau and presented all information required in the summons. The counsel said that Ahad was transferred from LDA three years ago and all the record whatsoever pertaining to the said housing project was never in his personal possession rather lied with the authority.

The petitioner  prayed to the court to set aside decision of the NAB regarding his arrest and order it to release him.

However, the NAB’s prosecutor Rana Arif objected to the maintainability of the petition, arguing that the petitioner was in the bureau’s custody. He asked the court to dismiss the petition for being not maintainable as arrest could not be challenged during physical remand. The prosecutor also submitted that the NAB arrested him in accordance with the law and all the legal requirements had been fulfilled before his arrest.

He submitted that Cheema was issued summons more than once but he did not appear before the NAB after which he was arrested. He opposed the petition, pleading the court to set aside the same for not being maintainable.