ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved its verdict on petitions on the video scandal involving accountability court judge Arshad Malik.
A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khosa heard the case during which Attorney General Anwar Mansoor Khan and FIA Director General Bashir Memon were present in court.
During the proceedings today, Chief Justice Khosa said that three weeks had been given to complete investigations.
Discussing the interim report submitted by the FIA director general earlier today, the chief justice said that it regarding two videos — one through which the judge was blackmailed and the other which was aired at the PML-N conference. The attorney general said that judge Malik had been posted to the accountability court on March 13, 2018.
The chief justice asked if the individual who had appointed judge Malik had come forward to which the attorney general responded that he had not.
Chief Justice Khosa added that as per the interim report, Nasir Janjua, a suspected in the video leak case, had said he appointed the judge.
“This means that after the Panama Papers verdict, the government at the time had appointed judge Arshad Malik,” the chief justice said.
The top judge asked a forensic audit of the judge’s video could not be conducted.
The attorney general said that the reason it couldn’t be conducted was because the video was taken from YouTube.
According to the attorney general, Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and PML-N leaders have disassociated themselves from the video.
He added that PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz had also tried to disassociate herself from the video and said that she had not seen the “objectionable video”.
The chief justice said that the federal government is protecting Arshad Malik by not reverting his service to Lahore, and stressed that his conduct brought shame to all judges.
Justice Asif Saeed Khosa said judges of such characters can be blackmailed by many people and expressed annoyance that he visited the suspect’s home after issuing a verdict.“Many aspects regarding Arshad Malik’s character need to be analyzed and the SC will overview the judicial elements itself,” he added.
After making remarks and listening to the arguments, the apex court reserved the verdict in the case.
Judge Malik, who convicted ousted premier Nawaz Sharif in the Al Azizia case last year, has been accused by PML-N’s Maryam and other party leaders of delivering the verdict “under pressure”.
Maryam also released videos purportedly proving her claims. The judge, however, denied being under any pressure, making counter-allegations against Nawaz Sharif and the PML-N for bribing and threatening him.