The Swiss authorities can be approached through a letter to re-open the graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari if an impeachement motion is brought against him, says Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan, the PM Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani’s counsel in contempt case.

According to a private television channel, a seven-judge bench of the court, headed by Justice Nasirul Mulk, was hearing the case.

During the hearing, the premier’s counsel, Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan, said that the prime minister only followed procedure and implemented the summaries presented to him. Ahsan said that writing the letter would demean the office of the president.

Heading the bench, Justice Nasirul Mulk said no discussion or debate is required if the Prime Minister has to act upon the judicial order.

Justice Sarmad Jalal Usmani queried if the premier was under obligation to act upon the summary of Law Ministry. Replying to this, Ahsan said it was not imperative; however, acting upon them is neither right nor wrong.

Justice Nasirul Mulk remarked the issue regarding the presidential immunity was not raised at a time of review. Ahsan said his client respects the judiciary.

Justice Gulzar Ahmed noted it is not the president but the government that is to write the letter. However, the PM Gilani’s counsel answered writing the letter will be tantamount to letting go of the right of immunity.

Justice Gulzar remarked, ‘likewise, defying the rulings amounts to ridicule and snub to the court.’

Justice Aijaz Afzal remarked the PM Gilani was given two proposals in summary dated September 23, 2010; he picked up one of them.

Aitzaz said, ‘but, the final word on the issue was from the law minister, which was approved by the PM.’

Justice Afzal said the PM Gilani is intent on defying the apex court’s rulings.

Later the hearing was adjourned till Tuesday.

Yousuf Raza Gilani was charged with contempt of court on Feb 13 over the government’s two-year refusal to write to authorities in Switzerland asking them to re-open corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.