ISLAMABAD - President of Pakistan on Saturday has been prayed to refer two orders of the Supreme Court in the Rs40 billion Employees Old Age Benefits Institution (EOBI) scam to the Supreme Judicial Council for a formal inquiry into the conduct of a top judge of the apex court.
The two orders – issued on August 1 and August 28, 2013 – were delivered by two different benches of the apex court. A letter written by Shahid Orakzai sought the president’s attention to Article 4 of Code of Conduct for Judges which insists that “A Judge must decline resolutely to act in a case involving his own interest, including those of persons whom he regards and treats as near relatives and close friends.”
The president was informed through the letter that the court on August 1 had ordered for the release of the frozen bank accounts of Eden Housing Ltd. after the company deposited more than Rs970 million with the SC Registrar. At the same time, however, the company was directed to deposit the remaining Rs900 million before the next date of hearing (August 28). The company on August 28 told the court that four of its properties bought by EOBI had not been released and therefore it needed more time for depositing the balance. Shahid Orakzai told The Nation that the president was informed that Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry hearing the case in question hosted a private dinner at his official residence in Judges Colony on 2-10-2013 for the same Limited Company which, reciprocally, invited the family of the judge to a luncheon at Islamabad’s Sarena Hotel the next day to celebrate the ‘engagement’ of its Chief Executive Officer who is still a respondent before the Supreme Court. However, “none of the five other judges is officially informed of the new relationship between the judge and the respondent Limited Company which is still to deposit Rs900 million,” the letter noted.
The letter said that while the bridal dress could be readily picked from boutiques, but finalising a marriage proposal does take some time. “It may involve some prudence if not jurisprudence. When did the Limited Company approach the judge is the key question,” the letter noted. The new relationship, beyond any doubt, has been formalised during the pendency, it added.
The president was informed that though the State, under Article 35 of the constitution is policy bound to defend every marriage “but not the marriage of convenience that derails justice”. “How would the other parties feel when a prudent party clinches a prized relationship with a judge well before the judgment?” Shahid Orakzai questioned in his letter.