PM contempt: Exercising civil rights not a move against Zardari, says SC

Published: April 20, 2012

Gilani's counsel Ahsan says writing letter to Swiss authorities will disgrace President zardari in front of the world. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

ISLAMABAD: Resuming the hearing of the contempt case against Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday, the Supreme Court of Pakistan observed that writing the letter to Swiss authorities was concerned with civil rights and questioned why it was being taken as a move against President Asif Ali Zardari.

The premier’s counsel, Aitzaz Ahsan, continued with his arguments before a seven-member bench headed by Justice Nasirul Mulk. He said that writing a letter to the Swiss authorities will disgrace the president in front of the world.

The bench observed that it was not the Supreme Court that had leveled graft charges against President Asif Ali Zardari, but the Swiss authorities were doing so.

Ahsan said that heads of states do not surrender their sovereignty in front of another country’s magistrate.

The apex court adjourned the hearing till Tuesday, April 24, 2012.

During Thursday’s hearing, referring to the six options that the Supreme Court had rolled out before the premier on January 10, Ahsan had said that this was a perfect example of a “pre-trial” and these options were nothing but a conundrum and were like “nuclear bombs, daisy-cutters and carpet bombing”.

Reader Comments (11)

  • Lt Col Imtiaz Alam(retd)
    Apr 20, 2012 - 11:46AM

    Every day some President or PM is brought to book a before a Court of Law. He will be no different.The people of Pakistan will be very happy to hand him over.

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  • Qaiser K. Ahmed
    Apr 20, 2012 - 1:26PM

    Just shows how weak and ineffective our Supreme Court is. They are trying to justify and apologize even before they announce their final judgement.

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  • Hassan Ansari
    Apr 20, 2012 - 1:49PM

    … there is disgrace for the post of President and the Country, in a President flouting and frustrating the law …

    … there is no disgrace for the post of President or the Country, in a President being held accountabe …

    … in fact, the position of Pakistan will be elevated in the comity of nations … if President is jeld accountable …

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  • Uza Syed
    Apr 20, 2012 - 3:35PM

    Aitzaz Ahsan calls the six options, the Supreme Court had set out before the PM, perfect example of a “pre-trial”—wow, and so it seems, actually. Aitzaz the intellectual condemns these options and puts them in the same ‘pre-emptive’ category of weapons as “nuclear bombs, daisy-cutters and carpet bombing”. Now this is piece of literature, best metaphorical language I came across and I guess even the judges of the bench there. This is imagism at its best. Great intellectual lawyer, good public thinker, this man—- Aitzaz Ahsan!

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  • elementary
    Apr 20, 2012 - 3:39PM

    I would be very interested in Ahsan’s assets before and after this Trial.

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  • Lala Gee
    Apr 20, 2012 - 4:20PM

    “writing a letter to the Swiss authorities will disgrace the president in front of the world.”

    If writing a letter to the Swiss authorities is disgraceful for the President then electing a convict of graft money laundering as the President of Pakistan is also equally disgraceful for the country and the post of President. Now he wants to hide behind the Presidential immunity to escape the punishment, further disgracing the country and the post.

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  • Logic Europe
    Apr 20, 2012 - 8:19PM

    everybody wants to use suprem court as a stick to beat people they don’t like politically

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  • Elcay
    Apr 20, 2012 - 8:20PM

    Sometime AA is arguing immunity, othertime says he is defending contempt only. Is he sure what he is doing?

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  • Ashraf P
    Apr 20, 2012 - 8:42PM

    I am not a fan of PPP. But what the Supreme Court has been doing over the last year is nothing but witch hunting. How many cases of corruption in the military has the SC taken suo-moto notice of? They are obviously getting their orders from GHQ but where is the “Independent Judiciary”??

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  • Jibran
    Apr 20, 2012 - 10:16PM

    @Elcay:
    You are totally lost my friend. He is not arguing immunity. His point is that immunity is ironclad and undisputed. And if PM has not written a letter, he has acted in good faith and hence no contempt of court.

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  • Logic Europe
    Apr 21, 2012 - 12:45AM

    I am a PPP fan, the only forword looking party
    be proud of ZARDAI , I am

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