IHC to open Rana Shamim’s original affidavit on next hearing

ISLAMABAD – The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Monday decided to open the sealed envelope of original affidavit of former chief judge of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) Rana Shamim on   next hearing.

A single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice   Athar Minallah conducted hearing in a contempt of court case against former chief judge of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) Rana Shamim and others for publishing a controversial affidavit of the former.

During the hearing, the additional attorney general informed the court that Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan was admitted in hospital and would return by Thursday.

Counsel for the former chief judge of GB informed the court that the affidavit had been submitted to the IHC and the former judge has been standing by his statement since the first day. He added that the real affidavit was sealed and has now been brought to Pakistan on the court’s order.

Justice Athar said that the sealed envelope was in its original condition and had not been opened by the court yet. He also said that the attorney general had said the media’s role is secondary. Rana Shamim has admitted that the content published in the newspaper is [the same as] in his affidavit. Rana Shamim has cast doubt on all judges of the IHC.

When the IHC chief justice asked Shamim’s lawyer to open the sealed envelope in which the affidavit was submitted to the court, Afridi replied that a new inquiry could be started by opening a sealed envelope.

Then, Justice Athar said that the envelope would be opened on the next hearing in the presence of the attorney general. He observed that the former chief judge of GB had apparently made a very big statement without any evidence and given an impression that all IHC judges were compromised. He continued that they would move forward in the light of Article 19 of the Constitution.

The judge said that the court has not decided yet to indict Shamim in the contempt case. He further said that the case would be discharged if Shamim satisfied the court that they did not commit contempt of court.

Rana’s counsel requested the court to adjourn the hearing till the end of winter vacations. Justice Athar said that the IHC had not issued any notification about the winter vacations and deferred the hearing till December 28.


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