Contempt law an attempt at granting immunity to elite class: Justice Khawaja

The court was hearing 27 petitions challenging the Contempt of Court Act.

Web Desk July 24, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Justice Jawwad S Khawaja, while hearing petitions against the new contempt law, remarked that this law was an attempt at granting immunity to the elite class, Express News reported on Tuesday.

He made this statement during the second hearing of the case comprising petitions against the contempt law.

Earlier, during the first hearing, the counsel for the federation had sought time from the Supreme Court of Pakistan as it began hearing 27 petitions challenging the Contempt of Court Act, saying that the case was of high importance.

The bench hearing the cases is headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and includes Justices Shakirullah Jan, Tasadduq Jilani, Jawwad S Khawaja and Khilji Arif.

The controversial legislation – which has been termed a ‘black law’ by the opposition – is aimed at shielding the new premier from contempt proceedings similar to those that led to Yousaf Raza Gilani’s ouster from the country’s top office.

The federal cabinet approved the bill on July 4 after which President Asif Ali Zardari, who has 30 days to sign any bill after approval by both houses of parliament, did not waste much time and put his signature on the draft after overnight passage by the Senate on July 12.