Rizwan Shehzad

Oct 172017

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court on Tuesday dismissed an intra-court appeal (ICA)  which sought to disqualify Member National Assembly Ayesha Gulalai. A division bench comprising Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb dismissed the petition declaring it “without merit”, adding that the petitioner was not an aggrieved person nor has the petition pointed out any legal infirmity or jurisdictional error in the single bench’s order. The court was referring to the September 22 order by the single bench comprising Justice Aamer Farooq who had dismissed Advocate Kulsum Khaliq’s petition. At the very outset, while hearing the petition, the court asked the appellant whether the Election Commission of Pakistan had started disqualification proceedings against the PTI MNA after the National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq had forwarded a reference against her to the apex poll body. Khaliq’s reply was affirmative. The division bench then noted that the Constitution outlines a clear procedure for disqualifying a member of parliament and that when the law prescribes that something has to be done in a particular manner, then it has to be done in that manner alone and not otherwise. Admittedly, the order read, that proceedings relating to Gulalai’s disqualification were pending before the ECP and, hence, any adjudication on the constitutional petition filed by Khaliq would be tantamount to interference in the ECP’s proceedings. The bench, subsequently, dismissed the petition. In the petition, Khaliq had contended that Gulalai levelled baseless allegations of harassment against PTI Chief Imran Khan without presenting any evidence and had [Read More…]

Sep 242017

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Monday appeared before an accountability court to record his statement in connection with “investigations against him for the accumulation of assets and funds beyond known sources of income”. The court, while supplying copies of the reference and other material consisting of 23 volumes to Dar, set September 27 as the date to indict the finance minister. Finance czar: Double whammy for Ishaq Dar In compliance with the earlier issued bailable arrest warrants, Dar’s counsel submitted bonds worth Rs1 million. Further, the court ordered the federal minister to submit Rs5 million to ensure his presence in the trial. Last week, the accountability court issued bailable arrest warrants against Dar. During the hearing, Dar’s staff officer Fazal Dad informed the court that summons had been received and the finance minister was aware of the case, however, he was in London on a private visit. “His seat was confirmed and he had to return but he couldn’t,” the official said.   The post Ishaq Dar to be indicted on Sept 27 appeared first on The Express Tribune. Click for detailed story

Jul 052017
SSP who saluted Maryam issued legal notice

ISLAMABAD: When SSP Arsala, a female officer of the capital police, saluted the daughter of Premier Nawaz Sharif outside the National Judicial Academy on Wednesday, little did she realise that a flex of her arm and flick of the wrist would land her in trouble. A lawyer has sent a legal notice to SSP Arsala seeking an ‘explanation’ and an ‘apology’ within 15 days for saluting a person who does not hold any public or government office. As Maryum Nawaz arrived at the academy to appear before the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing into the offshore assets of her family, SSP Arsala was seen walking up, coming to attention and saluting the first daughter. Imran criticises Maryam for appearing before JIT with ‘official protocol’ Later in the day lawyer Amna Ali sent a legal notice to SSP Arsala for the salute. “Please find the legal notice on behalf of taxpayers, citizens of Pakistan,” she wrote in the notice. Amna Ali, who is reportedly affiliated with Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, demanded that the SSP issue an apology in the national media along with an explanation for her action within 15 days.   Failure to do so, Ali warned, would incur legal proceedings and damages which she didn’t specify. In the notice, Ali said that as a citizen, and a member of Islamabad Bar Association and Islamabad High Court Bar Association, she has personal and public reservations over the salute and asked under what authority SSP Arsala had undertaken the action for a [Read More…]

May 292017

ISLAMABAD: The judge hearing the juvenile housemaid’s torture case has recused himself from future hearings after finding the accused guilty. Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani has sent the case back to the chief justice of the Islamabad High Court (IHC), requesting that the case be placed before any other bench. Additional District and Sessions Judge Raja Khurram Ali Khan and his wife, Maheen Zafar were booked after a minor housemaid accused them of keeping her in wrongful confinement, burning her hand over a missing broom, beating her with a ladle, detaining her in a storeroom, before threatening her with even worse. Justice Kayani said that since he has conducted and concluded the enquiry proceedings against the judge, found him guilty and already suggested punishment, he can’t conduct trial proceedings any further. Child maid torture: Judge’s review petition on indictment rejected During the hearing, the counsel for suspects Raja Muhammad Farooq, Raja Rizwan Abbasi and Sohail Akhtar said they do not have any objection to the judge, but agreed that because the same judge conducted the inquiry, it would be better if he does not also conduct the trial. To this, Advocate General Mian Abdul Rauf said the court was empowered to simultaneously conduct criminal and civil proceedings. Earlier, Justice Kayani, while ruling that the application for compounding the offence with the parents of the minor was not maintainable, had indicted the suspects and directed the prosecution to produce witnesses and evidence. The suspects pleaded ‘not guilty’ and were currently standing trial. IHC [Read More…]

Dec 302016
Courts’ new year resolution is to address delays, lack of justice for poor

ISLAMABAD: 2016 seemed to be quite a roller coaster for the higher judiciary in Islamabad. While the court remained in the headlines for the nature of cases it heard and passed orders and verdicts in, there were numerous moments where incidents taking place outside the court room gained prominence as well. It is because of these incidents within and without the courtroom that make 2017 worth looking forward to. Skimming over what happened in the Islamabad High Court during 2016, one major case that affected the IHC the most was never filed at court itself. A September verdict from the Supreme Court declared that scores of appointments in the IHC were illegal. As these appointees were denotified or reverted to their parent organisations, it also gave rise to a new feud between the bench and bar. The bar has actively campaigned to have the IHC Chief Justice Anwar Khan Kasi removed, as most of the appointments voided by the SC were made during his tenure. A reference against him was also filed before the Supreme Judicial Council by a member of the Islamabad High Court Bar Association. During this period, another judge, Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui made a rare appearance during a meeting of the IHCBA and addressed lawyers, urging them to delay protests till the decision of the SJC. However, this failed to placate the bar. Significant cases While each and every case at the IHC was important, some cases involving big names and controversies grabbed the headlines. These included [Read More…]

Nov 232016

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad advocate general said the judges’ appointment case can only progress after an appeal seeking the formation of a larger bench to hear the matter is decided upon. AG Mian Abdul Rauf brought an application by East Division district and sessions judge Imran Khan Sikandari to the notice of the Islamabad High Court. The judge asked for the formation of a larger bench to conduct proceedings.  He said the appeal was submitted in 2014 and was yet to be decided after two years. Consequently, Justice Aamer Farooq of the IHC ordered parties involved in the case to argue on November 30 if a larger bench should be formed or not. Previously, the court sought records related to the appointment of judges to the subordinate judiciary by the IHC registrar. The Islamabad High Court Bar Association, the district bar association and Advocate Muhammad Waqas Malik filed identical petitions in 2012, naming 18 judges of the district courts and the IHC registrar as respondents. The petitions claimed the IHC administration did not follow the Judicial Services Rules 2011. They added 50% of the Islamabad quota was completely neglected when making appointments. “The quota reserved for the provinces and Islamabad was violated,” the petitioners stated. As per the notification, IHC Chief Justice Mohammad Anwar Khan Kasi issued the transfer orders of Muhammad Shabbir, Muhammad Inamullah, Imran Khan Sikandari, Shaukat Rehman Khan, Muhammad Adnan Jamali and Sanam Bokhari. Shabbir, Inamullah and Sikandari were sent to district East, while Khan, Adnan and Bokhari were [Read More…]

Nov 202016

ISLAMABAD: The bench and bar of the Islamabad High Court are in a fix over demands for the top judge’s resignation over his alleged role in illegal appointments at the court. Insiders say the judge has decided against stepping down and has resolved to face all allegations. But a number of lawyers disagree with this move, to say the least. Those who know IHC Chief Justice Anwar Khan Kasi, say that he would not leave the office without fighting his case till the end. Legally, they say, he has a right to stay in office, as a reference and review petitions are still pending before the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) and the Supreme Court (SC), respectively over the illegal appointments. They, however, ask how many times appointing authorities have been shown the door for making “illegal” appointments, adding that the lawyers’ demand for the chief justice’s resignation seems “extraordinary” under the circumstances. Besides, it would be interesting to see if other judges continue working, or support the office of the IHC chief justice if lawyers, as had been planned earlier, hold general body meetings outside Justice Kasi’s courtroom, as supporting the judge as an individual and the office as an institution are two separate things. On September 26, the SC had declared as null and void all appointments made in the IHC after 2011, with an observation that if the competent authority itself started cherry picking by deliberately ignoring and overlooking meritorious candidates in appointment, the image of the institution would [Read More…]

Sep 212016

ISLAMABAD: While putting the Advocate General on notice, the Islamabad High Court on Wednesday directed the secretary ministry of interior to submit a report on the alleged ‘enforced disappearance’ of a software engineer within a week. In the order, Justice Athar Minallah noted that the respondents, excluding the Directorate of Military Intelligence which has yet to complete its ground check, had stated that the missing man was not in their custody and did not know of his whereabouts. Sajid Mehmood, a software engineer, has been missing for the past six months. His wife Mahera, also a software engineer, filed a petition in the IHC through her counsel Umer Gilani in which she alleged that her husband was “abducted from their home in F-10/1 amidst circumstance which strongly suggests that this is a case of enforced disappearance.” In the petition Mahera states that on the evening of March 14, around eight men arrived in a Land Cruiser and two double cabin car and barged into their home on Street 29, F-10/1. After searching the house for 20 minutes they took away Sajid along with some of the family’s computers, academic certificates, property records, keys and car documents. Some of the men who had barged in were wearing black police uniforms with the insignia ‘No Fear’ inscribed on it, while others were wearing plain clothes, the petition further adds. He said that the missing engineer’s wife had decided to file a habeas corpus petition before the ICH after waiting for four and a [Read More…]

Jun 212016

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday dismissed an application of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) seeking early hearing of the foreign funding case. The application was moved before a division bench comprising Justice Noorul Haq Qureshi and Justice Aamer Farooq during the hearing of the petition of the PTI’s Chairperson, Imran Khan, challenging electoral body’s decision of ordering examination of audited accounts of the party on the allegations of receiving foreign funding and contributions. When the counsel, Saqlain Haider, submitted application for early hearing, the court inquired about the urgency in the matter, especially when the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) is not functional these days. Subsequently, the court, while dismissing the application, directed the counsel to file a fresh application after the ECP becomes functional. Akbar Sher Babar, an estranged PTI founding member who developed differences with party chief Imran Khan over internal corruption and alleged violations of laws to maintain its accounts, had filed the case of alleged illegal foreign funding before the ECP in November last year. Baber has sought account details of money transferred from abroad including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and United Arab Emirates to the PTI accounts or to accounts of the party’s employees since July 2010 to date. The division bench had remarked that the court had no concern from where the funding came but it intent to see if the legal course of law had been followed or not. Earlier, Khan through his counsel Anwar Mansoor Khan challenged [Read More…]

Jun 172016

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday directed that “appropriate action” be taken in connection with a 350kg consignment of Saudi dates, ordered by the head of International Islamic University (IIUI), held at Benazir Bhutto International Airport due to problems with the paperwork. In the order, Justice Athar Minallah said, “The court expects that the respondents shall take appropriate action, in compliance with the Plant Quarantine Act.” The directions came in response to a request from quarantine department in-charge Shahid Abdullah, who sought time from the court to seek instructions from the competent authority to resolve the issue. The court, while accepting the request, relisted the case for June 20. IIUI Director Abdullah Al-Afifi had sought the IHC’s intervention after the consignment, imported from Saudi Arabia, was held at the airport because the required Saudi documents were in Arabic rather than bilingual — English and Arabic. The importer had instead attached a translation of the Arabic document. Justice Minallah had issued notice to the Ministry of National Food, Security and Research, after Al-Afifi filed a petition seeking release of the consignment at the earliest. Al-Afifi claims that the consignment contains perishable items and was detained without any justification. He maintained, through his counsel Rehanuddin Khan Golra, that the customs authorities had no objection to the shipment, but food ministry officials stopped the consignment and ordered that a quarantine certificate issued by the Saudi Ministry of Agriculture be produced. Golra said the petitioner produced a quarantine certificate issued written in Arabic [Read More…]

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