ISLAMABAD  -    The Supreme Court will hear the video scandal case against Judge Arshad Malik today amid strict security for the judge who will appear before the SC.

Judge Arshad Malik had requested foolproof security from the law ministry ahead of the much awaited hearing. The apex court also issued orders yesterday detailing the security protocol for the hearing.

The case pertains to the investigation of the controversial secretly taped video of the judge.

A three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa would hear the petition.

A leaked video by Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) Vice President Maryam Nawaz claimed the judge was blackmailed into convicting former prime minister Nawaz Sharif without any evidence.

However, Malik in a news release issued by the Accountability Court had denied Maryam’s allegations and termed them baseless.

Later, in an affidavit submitted to the law ministry, the judge claimed he was blackmailed and offered bribe to favour Nawaz Sharif in the Al-Azizia Case.

Afterwards the Islamabad High Court removed him from the post as an accountability court No. 2 judge. A spokesperson of the law ministry had announced the decision of the judge’s removal in the light of the ongoing ‘video leak’ controversy.

Acting Chief Justice of the Islamabad High Court IHC Aamer Farooq in a letter had requested the Ministry of Law to remove Judge Arshad Malik from his duties till a decision on the controversy. The ministry last week had barred Arshad Malik from serving as the accountability court judge.

The Supreme Court yesterday issued directives detailing the security protocol for the July 16 hearing. The directives said that entry in the premises should be regulated through special passes issued by security.

“Only the petitioners/respondents whose cases are fixed in the court will be allowed to enter in Supreme Court premises,” it stated.

The apex court, however, added that advocates and journalists who regularly come for the top court’s proceedings will be exempted from passes.

The directives also asked general public, who want to witness the court proceedings, to contact Superintendent Police (security) for security passes. “Entry into the court building will be allowed after frisking and searching of bags/purses etc,” the directive read.

The security arrangements were made at the Supreme Court premises during the petition seeking a thorough probe into the video leak controversy involving accountability court judge Arshad Malik.

For proper decorum and smooth functioning of legal proceedings, the police have adopted special security measures at the premises. According to a news release, in view of the limited seating capacity in the Court Room No. 1, the entry will be regulated through special security passes to be issued by SP (Security) Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The court has issued notices to Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) Vice President Maryam Nawaz, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, opposition leader in the Senate Raja Zafarul Haq, and others.

The Supreme Court took up the case on a petition submitted by a citizen Ishtiaq Ahmed, who appealed to the apex court for an independent judicial inquiry of the video scandal.