Speaker’s ruling: All set for court decision on Gilani’s fate

Published: June 19, 2012
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A late-night press release from the Supreme Court announced heightened security for today (Tuesday), citing the hearing of “high-profile cases.” PHOTO: AFP/FILE

A late-night press release from the Supreme Court announced heightened security for today (Tuesday), citing the hearing of “high-profile cases.” PHOTO: AFP/FILE

ISLAMABAD: 

The case that will determine the final fate of the prime minister has entered its last stage – and a verdict could be announced as early as today, once the attorney general concludes his arguments at 11am.

Giving further fuel to the speculations was a late-night press release from the Supreme Court announcing heightened security for today (Tuesday), citing the hearing of “high-profile cases.”

Charged proceedings on Monday saw the prime minister’s counsel, Aitzaz Ahsan, conclude his arguments in front of a seemingly unconvinced bench – which is hearing petitions challenging the National Assembly speaker’s earlier ruling that the prime minister was not liable to be disqualified after being held in contempt.

On a number of occasions, the bench said it could review the speaker’s decision.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry told Aitzaz: “Please keep in mind, some actions of the speaker are different and distinct from parliament and there are many judgments where actions taken by the speaker are subjected to judicial review.”

The chief justice also asked him why an appeal was not filed against the conviction. Aitzaz, without any hesitation, responded that the government feared a more unfavourable order in case an appeal was filed.

While concluding his arguments, the premier’s counsel told the court that for the final disqualification process, office of the National Assembly’s speaker would be used, to which the chief justice said “no”, adding that a 30-day deadline had already passed. Aitzaz said that even if the matter was referred to the Election Commission, before any final decision is made, they have right to present their stance before the commission.

Speaker’s version

National Assembly Speaker Dr Fehmida Mirza, in a written reply submitted before a three-judge bench headed by the chief justice, held that the “speaker is the guardian of the rights of the honourable members of the National Assembly with distinct powers and she cannot be called in question.”

Mirza also asserted that there was no charge of ridiculing the judiciary on the prime minister. She also said that the ruling of the speaker or decision on any matter, within her cognizance given on the floor of the house or in office, is final under the rule 28 of the Rules of Procedures and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007.

The court observed that the charges of ridicule and scandalising the judiciary are covered under Article 204 (2) under which the contempt proceedings were initiated and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani was sentenced.

Heated argument

When the court asked Aitzaz how a convicted individual could decide the fate of 180 million people of the country, Attorney General (AG) Irfan Qadir stood up from his seat and asked the court how seven judges of the Supreme Court could decide the fate of the 180 million people.

Giving reference of the parliamentary resolution in favour of the speaker’s ruling, AG Qadir told the court that Justice Nasirul Mulk led a seven-judge bench’s decision to charge the chief executive of the country was in violation of clauses 1 and 2 of the Article 248 of the Constitution. Qadir said that there was no judgment before the speaker to examine the fact whether any question of disqualification has arisen or not except poetry [referring to Justice Asif Saeed Khosa’s additional notes in the detailed verdict]. An irked chief justice told the AG, “I think you are crossing your limit, I am warning you not to say this again.”

But Qadir insisted and reiterated that the Supreme Court’s judge had ridiculed the chief executive, which is a serious offence. AG Qadir will conclude his arguments by 11 am on Tuesday.

Published In The Express Tribune, June 19th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (23)

  • Saqibtahir
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:28AM

    History ahas not seen this much politicized judiciary. They will never get tired of creating one crisis after another.

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  • Rizwan Gondal
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:28AM

    AG is a babar awan incarnate…his nemesis is not far away.

    Recommend

  • Falcon
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:30AM

    This AG guy is so annoying…

    Recommend

  • dr j tipu
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:35AM

    previously it was Abdul Qayyum with shoes hurled at, now this A Qadir………….join the club all corrupts, yesterday was mushy, today these PPP corrupts

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  • Jibran
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:45AM

    PCO oath by a judge and granting a dictator right to amend constitution are not subject to parliamentary review and are not against the basic structure of the constitution. The decision of the speaker however is subject to judicial review.

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  • Kamran khan
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:46AM

    My honourable judges We (the nation) want to hear only one line verdict and that is
    ” Yousaf Raza Gilani is no longer a prime minister ” please my lord give us this happiness
    Give us the opportunity to witness the great decision by the greatest chief justice of Pakistan so far

    Recommend

  • Jibran
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:48AM

    Throughout our history, the judiciary has been tarnished by a bunch of shameless characters. In the past, there were at least some sane voices. This dissent is now totally absent from the current lot, which was handpicked by a single individual, who’s piety and divine innocence makes him “Ameer ul Momineen”.

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  • Ali
    Jun 19, 2012 - 4:49AM

    Send him home pls. He badly needs to start spending his own money for his own expenses.

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  • Saleem
    Jun 19, 2012 - 5:52AM

    AG Qadir, a reminiscent of Musharraf era, was handpicked to ridicule judiciary and he is doing his best to do that.

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  • Adnan
    Jun 19, 2012 - 6:27AM

    This is a partisan S.C and CJP. I mean all the time they are taking cases against the government in a hurry.

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  • zia
    Jun 19, 2012 - 6:39AM

    lolz… I love the corrupt government facing music. he he he he… Evil laugh!!!

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  • zia
    Jun 19, 2012 - 6:50AM

    All hail to PTI for taking this step of filing a petition against speakers’ ruling first and also thanks to all those petitioners who followed PTI’s footprints and filed their respective petitions…….. :)

    Recommend

  • PROF: (R) MAQBOOL AHMAD
    Jun 19, 2012 - 6:57AM

    There is a famous proverb in urdu, “LATOON KE BHOOT BATOON SE NAHEN MANTE”. We (with all regards to the Supreme Court) are just wasting our time to nagate this proverb.

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  • Sehr.Siddiqui
    Jun 19, 2012 - 7:08AM

    If our judges do not show courage and give justice without mincing words, the nature’s justice will come into play. These judges will stand a trial on the day of judgement.

    Recommend

  • Rajendra Kalkhande
    Jun 19, 2012 - 7:09AM

    Asking for heightened security simply means PM is going out. If PM does not leave even after this, chances of Army take over are extremely high. Get ready friends…

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  • Deadender
    Jun 19, 2012 - 7:36AM

    A ne position “king” should be created in the constitution for I.M. CHAUDHRY.

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  • Butt Saab
    Jun 19, 2012 - 7:45AM

    This suprême court has been taken hostage by someone who has lost all sense of judicial norms. He is just so embarrassing.

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  • Manzoor Ahmed Khan
    Jun 19, 2012 - 8:47AM

    This supreme court has no moral authority…….

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  • Saqib
    Jun 19, 2012 - 9:25AM

    Yeah I hope there is one liner decision with no loop holes and not subject to appeal at all.

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  • Hassan Begg
    Jun 19, 2012 - 9:46AM

    @Kamran khan:

    live a long life Mr Kamran

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  • Jun 19, 2012 - 11:41AM

    whatever the judgement, who knows gilani will never quit, he remains p.m. for years to come……..

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  • syed Imran
    Jun 19, 2012 - 1:12PM

    It will be a great service to this country if the court disqualifies the PM in its judgement

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  • nasim ahmed
    Jun 19, 2012 - 1:50PM

    I hope the judgement is in accordance with the constitution and goes a long way in the history of our country.

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