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Legal experts divided over PM’s disqualification

Legal experts divided over PM’s disqualification

ISLAMABAD: Top legal experts are not hopeful about Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif or PTI chief Imran Khan being disqualified by way of references at any relevant platform. They also agree that the top courts role will be significant in the coming days.

PTI chief Imran Khan is likely to personally visit the SC on Monday to file the petition.

The Pakistan Bar Council is urging the apex court to take suo motu action, but the Supreme Court Bar Association is opposing the court’s direct interference on the issue.

A section of lawyers is pessimistic about the Supreme Court exercising its suo motu powers in this regard because the incumbent judiciary is adopting a policy of judicial restraint.

PTI leader Ishaq Khan Khakwani believes that they have very strong case against the PM. He insists that the Supreme Court, while entertaining petitions under Article 184 (3) , disqualified dozens of parliamentarians in the past.

SCBA president Ali Zafar believes the outcome of references against political leadership is a waste of time, adding that recording of evidence would be required to disqualify the PM but neither the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) nor the National Assembly speaker have powers to do so in both the cases.

Endorsing SCBA’s opinion, another senior lawyer, Munir Paracha, also said that nomination papers of any MNA could be challenged within a specific time period. He also believes that opposition parties should negotiate with the federal government.

Another top lawyer Khawaja Haris says that it is yet to be decided which forum would be appropriate to decide on the matter of ‘Sadiq’ and ‘Ameen’ as the matter is still sub judice in the apex court. He contends that after the passage of 18th Amendment, a parliamentarian can be disqualified if there is a judgment by any court against him. He also contends that the ECP can disqualify any member of parliament during a specific timeframe.

Pakistan Bar Council’s Vice-Chairman Farogh Nasim says that the Supreme Court can take up the issue under Article 184 (3) . Salman Aslam Butt, the counsel for the PM, contends that neither the ECP nor the Supreme Court has the authority to disqualify Nawaz. While referring to the SC’s judgment on the alleged misstatement of the PM during PTI dharna, he states that the court has already declared that there is still no forum to determine the matter of Sadiq and Ameen.

Courtesy : Express Tribune



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