ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has ordered that a retired apex court judge will continue to head the probe into political intervention into the implementation of its verdict to reinstate Zafar Qureshi to the Federal Investigation Agency.
On Friday, a two-member bench of the SC resumed hearing the suo motu case in the National Insurance Company Limited land scam after a long pause. The case had to be adjourned till Monday, November 14, as the full bench was incomplete after the bench’s third member, Justice Ghulam Rabbani, retired last month.
“A minimum of three judges are required at the bench for this case to be heard. We will constitute a special bench for this case [at the next hearing],” Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry remarked.
The CJ said that Justice Rabbani was investigating allegedly anti-judiciary advertisements issued in the media that claimed that PML-Q leader Moonis Elahi was innocent and that lead investigator Qureshi was acting in a biased manner. He was also probing death threats to Qureshi, allegedly coming from the Chaudhrys of Gujrat.
Later, former Senate chairperson Waseem Sajjad, the Chaudhry family lawyer, told reporters outside the court that Qureshi had levelled ‘baseless’ charges against his client merely to ‘twist’ the case.
“The court has been requested to remove Qureshi’s statement [from the court’s records] against my clients,” he said.
Meanwhile, PML-Q President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, who also attended court proceedings, chose to ignore questions on the NICL scam and target PML-N instead.
He said that ‘honest’ people who were planning to join the PML-N had now decided to join Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf. However, he insisted that PML-Q was not afraid of Imran’s rally although he had put up a good show.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 12th, 2011.