ISLAMABAD - While seeking to suspend Supreme Judicial Council proceedings against him, Lahore High Court judge Muhammad Farrukh Irfan has demanded an open court trial with a new composition of the council.

The LHC judge on Thursday filed a petition in the Supreme Court through advocate Hamid Khan under Article 184(3) of Constitution citing the Federation through the Secretary Ministry of Law and Justice and the SJC as respondents.

The petitioner has raised objection to the participation of Chief Justice of Islamabad High Court Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi in the SJC as an inquiry against him (Kasi) was also being held by the council.

He has argued in the petition that the constitutional provision cannot be subjected to narrow interpretation of limited application like the one done the SJC.

A complaint against Justice Irfan was by filed by Nazar Muhammad Chohan, an ex-DMG officer. Upon that, the SJC has initiated proceedings against the judge.

The LHC judge has contended that the SJC, in its present composition, was coram non judice (without jurisdiction) and all its proceedings against him under Article 209 were constitutionally invalid. The SJC rejected his objection on October 9, 2017.

Justice Irfan has demanded that the inquiry against him be held in the open court instead of the in-camera. He has prayed the apex court to declare the SJC proceedings with the participation of Justice Kasi being repugnant to clause 3 of Article 209 of the Constitution.

He said that it was his fundamental right to insist that the inquiry be held by a properly and constitutionally constituted council without the inclusion of Justice Kasi. He has urged the apex court to declare all the orders passed by the unconstitutionally constituted council without lawful authority and liable to be quashed.

He said all the orders passed by the council under SJC Procedure were unconstitutional and of no legal effect. He has asked the court to declare that the SJC has no jurisdiction to hold an inquiry into his conduct which were based upon his judicial orders, particularly those upheld by the Supreme Court.

The judge has contended that the SJC could not inquire into a complaint filed against his conduct, which was not supported by any prima facie material, documents or evidence. The petitioner has demanded that he was entitled to an open inquiry before the council and its order of May 18, 2017, was without lawful authority. He has further demanded to suspend the proceedings of the council till the decision by the apex court.