Islamabad (September 15, 2017): The five-member larger bench of Supreme Court on Friday rejected the review petitions of Sharif family and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar against the apex court’s July 28, 2017 judgment.
It is short order, the court ruled that all the petitions filed by Sharif Family and Ishaq Dar are rejected.
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Justice Asif Saeed Khosa read out the one-liner judgment that states “Reasons to be recorded later, all these review petitions are dismissed.”
The larger bench conducted hearing on the review petitions for three days during which senior counsel Khawaja Harris, who appeared for Nawaz Sharif, Shahid Hamid who represented Dar, and Salman Akram Raja, who represented Nawaz’s children and Capt (retd) Muhammad Safder, advanced arguments.Earlier, the court reserved its judgment after hearing arguments of the petitioners counsel. On Friday, counsel of Nawaz Sharif’s children Salman Akram Raja advanced arguments before the bench.
The petitioners- Nawaz Sharif, his children Maryam Nawaz, Hussain Nawaz, Hassan Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safder and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had cought court July 28 judgement that disqualified the former premier, besides ordering NAB to file references against him and his family members and Finance Minister Dar.After hearing arguments of Salman Akram Raja, the court reserved its judgment.
When Salman Akram Raja started his arguments, he told the court at the very outset that he was opting the arguments of senior counsel Khawaja Harris regarding appointment of monitoring judge and Joint Investigation Team’s findings.
Raja told the court that besides the three children of Nawaz Sharif he was also appearing for Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar in the review petitions.Questioning the order of the court to file reference against Safder, Raja submitted that Captain Safder had nothing to do with London Flats. He added that even JIT had found no evidence or link of his client with the flats. Despite that the court directed NAB to file reference against Safder, he added.
Upon this, Justice Khosa remarked that let investigation to go on regarding the ownership of London flats.
He observed that Capt (retd) Safder had signed the trust deed of Maryam, adding that he had some kind of link with the flat.
When the counsel raised the issue of fair trail, Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh said that the court would ensures the rights of the petitioners.
He observed that the court was bound to ensure fair trial to everyone. There will be no compromise on fundamental rights and fair trail, assured Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh.Justice Ejaz Afzal observed that after investigation its emerged Maryam Nawaz was the real owner of London flats.
Yesterday Nawaz’s counsel Khawaja Harris and Ishaq Dar’s counsel Shahid Hamid had completed their arguments.
During the hearing on Thursday, when Harris contended that his client was disqualified for un-received salary, a member of the bench had remarked that documents submitted in court during the Panama Papers case proved that then prime minister Nawaz Sharif received a salary from a UAE-based company in August 2013.Harris had argued that Nawaz never claimed to receive any salary from FZE Capital.
He had stated that a proper trial was required for disqualification of a lawmaker. He had argued that under the Article (i) (f), elections of a lawmaker is declared void, but the court straightaway disqualified his client for life under the same article.Justice Ejaz had remarked that Nawaz Sharif did not declare a salary account and that documents submitted in court state that he received in August 2013 a salary in his FZE Capital account. He had observed further that the relevant record in this regard is present in the JIT’s Volume IX.
Adding to this, Justice Ahsan had remarked that Nawaz’s employment number is 194811 and that documents state that he received a salary.
Justice Azmat had stated that the apex court made its decision in the case on verified facts.However, Harris had reiterated that Nawaz never received any salary from FZE Capital in any of his accounts.
Terming the JIT report incomplete, Harris had said the JIT received most of its documents from sources and had faults in it. Justice Ejaz responded that the faults in the report will benefit your case.
“You will have a complete chance for cross-examination in the trial court,” he had remarked. He added that the bench had not considered the JIT report the undeniable truth and did not make its decision on the basis of the JIT report.Dar counsel Shahid Hamid while responding the bench members’ question about the disproportionate increase in Dar assets had argued that his client’s assets did not grow overnight but expanded over a course of 15 years.
The bench had observed that the counsel should point out exactly what portions of the judgment he wants to be reviewed by the apex court.
On contention of Dar’s counsel, Justice Asif Saeed Khosa had remarked that Supreme Court was bound to protect the rights of every citizen including your client.When Dar’s counsel raised questions over SC directive to NAB to file reference against his client, Justice Khosa had reminded him that NAB chairman had stated before the court he would do nothing.
Then the judge had asked the counsel as to he wanted to SC to do nothing when NAB is doing nothing.
Justice Ejaz had said that the accountability court was free to reach to its own decision. The investigation can be reviewed and that the petitioners will be allowed the opportunity to cross-examine the witnesses and JIT members, he said.
The Supreme Court had allowed Sharifs’ plea that a five-judge bench is formed to hear the review petitions against the July 28 Panama Papers case verdict instead of an already-formed three-member bench.Then a new bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa was formed which included Justice Gulzar Ahmed, Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Ijazul Ahsan.
All five judges were part of the Panama Papers case bench that disqualified Nawaz and ordered the filing of corruption cases against the others.
On August 15, the former prime minister filed three petitions in the Supreme Court seeking the court to review the Panama Papers verdict.The petitions had pleaded the apex court to dismiss the petitions filed by Sheikh Rasheed, Imran Khan and Siraj-ul-Haq.
The former prime minister, through his petition, argued that the decision passed by the court on July 28 should have been passed by a three-member bench as Justice Asif Saeed Khosa and Justice Gulzar Ahmed’s jurisdiction had expired after their dissenting judgment on April 20.“That by signing the Final Order of the Court dated 28.07.2017, the Honorable two Members of the “Bench” have actually passed two final Judgments in the same case, which is unprecedented in judicial history,” said the appeal.