AGP meets PM amid speculation

Published: June 18, 2019
Attorney General of Pakistan (AGP) Anwar Mansoor Khan. PHOTO: FILE

Attorney General of Pakistan (AGP) Anwar Mansoor Khan. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Anwar Mansoor Khan on Monday met Prime Minister Imran Khan, two days after his appearance before the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) where he pled presidential references against the top court judge Qazi Faez Isa and Sindh High Court judge K K Agha.

The AGP’s meeting with Imran Khan at the premier’s National Assembly chamber is considered significant in the prevailing circumstances in which there are contradictory reports about outcome of the SJC’s first meeting.

It is learnt that one section within the ruling party is advocating sacking the AGP. Famous lawyer Naeem Bukhari has been contacted in this regard but he is still unwilling to work as the AGP.

In the past, the AGP was unhappy about appointments of law officers without his consultation. The Law Ministry also attached the AGP’s opinion in favour of presidential references against the two judges.

A senior government official admitted that one section within ruling party is unhappy with the AGP but said the government does not have a suitable replacement right now.

SJC shares reference copy with Justice Qazi Faez Isa

Officials in AGP office, however, rejected reports about changing the top law officer before start of the presidential reference proceedings.  These officials claimed the SJC proceedings were smooth and in favour of the government.

Representatives of superior bars say the SJC grilled the AGP and he could not satisfy it. However, there is no official confirmation of these reports. Interestingly, if the presidential reference fails, the SJC may recommend action against the responsible person.

The council has shared a copy of the presidential references with both judges who have been accused of not disclosing their foreign properties in their wealth statements. The council has also offered that both judges may share their stances with the council at the stage of preliminary inquiry.

A senior lawyer believes that the SC judge Justice Isa should give a written statement in the SJC. Instead of sending show cause notice directly, the SJC has shared copy of reference under paragraph No 8 (3) of Supreme Judicial Council Procedure of Enquiry 2005.

“If the council is of the view that before forming an opinion, it should also hear the judge under enquiry, it shall require the said judge to present himself before the council. The council shall provide him the information and material received against him,” the paragraph No 8 (3) of the SJC procedure says.

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