A lot is being said about the Imran Khan contempt of court issue.
First thing which shouldn’t be done is to make the issue Imran Khan vs CJP Iftikhar Chaudhary or Supreme Court vs Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf. The main issue is rigging which is creating frustration and so the frustrated remarks. Second thing is that criticizing bad performance is our right as we also appreciate good acts and support judiciary or anyone when they are on the right side. Even if they give some bad decision in this case then it will be our right to criticize the decision or judges but at the same time we will not allow any 3rd November type thing by army against judiciary or constitution if they decided to exploit the situation.
The emerging scenario seems to be a dream scenario for Army,ISI, PPP,PML and NRO gang. I hope things will not go ugly and sanity will prevail. We all know what happened on the election day and how ROs and polling agents worked. If judiciary takes election rigging issue on merit then it will increase their respect and if they go with status-quo forces then same status-quo forces will exploit the issue for their benefits.
We need to stand with justice and not mere individuals. I hope sanity will prevail.
by Ansar Abbasi
ISLAMABAD: General (retd) Pervez Musharraf can be tried under Article 6 of the Constitution for his November 3, 2007 action as well as for his October 12, 1999 martial law, but the 18th Amendment gives constitutional cover to the PCO oath taken by superior court judges in 2000.
Although the 2008 parliament scrapped certain parts of the 17th Amendment passed by Musharraf’s parliament in 2004, the 18th Amendment endorses the indemnity of the oath of judges under PCO taken in 2000.
Therefore, as per the Constitution Musharraf could be tried for high treason for twice abrogating the Constitution, once in October 1999 and again in November 2007, but the judges who had taken oath under Musharraf’s PCO in 2000 are protected by the pre as well as post 18th Amendment Constitution.
Musharraf’s 12 October 1999 martial law, which was indemnified by the 2002-2007 Parliament under dictator’s rule, did not get the 2008-2013 parliament’s endorsement but the dictator’s consequent actions including the oath of judges in 2000 under the PCO got complete constitutional protection in the 18th amendment.
Those media commentators, politicians and opponents of the present independent judiciary, who are desirous of dragging others including the PCO judges of the 2000 PCO, in the high treason case are making an unconstitutional demand. The 18th amendment despite having declared the 2000 PCO as unlawful protected the superior court judges, who had taken the said oath, through 270AA (3), which reads as:
Judges of the Supreme Court, High Courts and Federal Shariat Court who were holding the office of a judge or were appointed as such, and had taken oath under the Oath of Office (Judges) Order, 2000 (I of 2000), shall be deemed to have continued to hold the office as a judge or appointed as such, as the case may be, under the Constitution, and such continuance or appointment, shall have effect accordingly;
Judges of the Supreme Court, High Courts and Federal Shariat Court who not having been given or taken oath under the Oath of Office (Judges) Order, 2000, (I of 2000), and ceased to hold the office of a Judge shall, for the purposes of pensionary benefits only, be deemed to have continued to hold office under the Constitution till their date of superannuation.”
Musharraf’s parliament through its 17th Amendment, had validated/indemnified the October 1999 martial law of Musharraf besides giving constitutional protection to all other president’s orders, ordinances, chief executive’s orders, including the Provisional Constitution Order No. 1 of 1999, the Oath of Office (Judges) Order, 2000 (No. 1 of 2000), Chief Executive’s Order No. 12 of 2002, the amendments made in the Constitution through the Legal Framework Order, 2002 (Chief Executive’s Order No. 24 of 2002), the Legal Framework (Amendment) Order , 2002 (Chief Executive’s Order No. 29 of 2002), the Legal Framework (Second Amendment) Order, 2002 (Chief Executive’s Order No. 32 of 2002) and all other laws made between October 12, 1999 and the date on which Article 270AA was inserted by Musharraf’s parliament in 2004.
As the previous parliament could not completely scrap the 17th Amendment, therefore, it gave partial indemnity to all presidential orders, laws etc that justified the consequential actions of Musharraf’s first martial law. The 18th Amendment also did not indemnify the November 3, 2007 action of Musharraf but gave constitutional cover to the general elections of February 2008 as announced by the former dictator.
Supreme Court has ordered to public lal masjid commission report and told the government to give it to anyone requesting for it. In the report the commission has put the blame of innocent loss of lives on General (R) Pervaiz Musharraf and his team at that time including former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.
There were some issues in the report which are still a subject of great like the body count and who died. Reportedly, according to the commission report some 103 people were killed in the operation including 92 civilians and 11 security personnel. They also said that no woman was killed in the operation.
However, according to several accounts from lal masjid students, prominent journalists and religious leaders, there were much casualties including women and children. Those who were killed, also allegedly included mother of Abdur Rasheed Ghazi and Abdul Aziz.
Before jumping on any conclusion, we need to take this report very carefully and in full context.
There are two parts of the issue:
a) circumstances in which the operation happened:
The commission interviewed people involved in negotiations and from establishment. based on that they put the blame on government for unnecessary loss of innocent lives. they have recommended DIYAT for the victims and also mentioned that they can go for QISAS as well.
b) ground evidence and number count of bodies and who died:
They had to rely on people sitting in ISI, MI or IB to get ground intelligence on that.
A good thing Supreme Court has done is that they have told the government to make the report public and so it will be a good chance for victim families and supporters to come forward and challenge the given figures based on possible lies of ISI, IB and MI or other govt. agencies. We need to know that most of the relevant ground evidence was destroyed by Army when they shut down the area.
Tahir al Qadri, another dirty game of establishment and their foreign masters to hijack the momentum of change
After all the thought process and failed attempts to hijack the momentum of change being developed, Pakistani establishment and their foreign masters in USA/UK have come up with another puppet named Tahir al Qadri.
It seems all the pressure on MQM by Scotland yard for Imran Farooq murder case was to make them support this game and stay in their limits by accepting the role of a sidekick instead of growing beyond their given size and role.
MQM, ANP, PPP, PML and JUI have done so many crimes that its very hard for them to take a stand against establishment and their masters in USA/UK. Imagine if they can be forced to accept arrangements in local politics because of their criminal record then how can they take any stand (if they have any) on issues related to foreign policies, war policies and other important areas?
Apparently Tahir al Qadri’s mission is to hijack the slogans, confuse the masses by using similar points as used by anti status-quo parties and then present this hijacked revolution in the plate of Pakistani establishment and their masters abroad.
It seems propaganda against Imran Khan on stupid tape issue, Zaid Hamid letter to Imran Khan attacking his loyalty to the country and presenting him as security risk, and propaganda against Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhary especially on sectarian lines and Arsalan Iftikhar case are part of the same dirty game plan.
Its a big test now for Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI), Jamat e Islami (JI) and other smaller parties to come up with a counter strategy and stand above their petty issues to counter this evil plot by Pakistani establishment and USA/uK.
Next election will again be on fake war on terror policies, independent judiciary, missing persons, NRO and other important issues on which establishment is on the opposing side of judiciary and parties who support judiciary and oppose this fake war.
Many people are stupid enough to be fooled by this ass hat Tahir al Qadri and his fake agenda of change and now we need to see how the forces of change in politics, media and civil society can counter this attack.
Statements by Chief Justice of Pakistan and Army Chief –> We support the Supreme Court, Chief Justice and the Constitution
In past few days there were some statements given by Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhar and Army Chief General Ashfaq Prevez Kiyani. According to media reports, Kiyanis words were (from Pakistan Today):
“Any effort which wittingly or unwittingly draws a wedge between the people and armed forces of Pakistan undermines the larger national interest.”
Also he said:
“No individual or institution has the monopoly to decide what is right or wrong while defining the ultimate national interest.”
These words may not seem very harmful but if we look them in the context of Asghar Khan case and recent proceedings of missing persons cases in the
Supreme Court then one can get some idea about the possible target of the statements.
On the other hand, SC released a speech of CJP which he gave earlier but the timing of releasing the speech to media seems to be interesting and apparently it is related with the statement by Army Chief. In the speech, honorable Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhary renewed his stance to protect the constitution.
According to media reports, he said:
“Gone are the days when stability and security of the country was defined in terms of number of missiles and tanks as a manifestation of hard power available at the disposal of the state,” the chief justice said while speaking to a delegation of the 97th National Management Course, National School of Public Policy and National Management College Lahore at the Supreme Court building.
Also he said:
“The composition, powers and jurisdiction of the Supreme Court are set out by the Constitution itself and the court exercises original, appellate, review and advisory jurisdictions and its decisions are binding on all other courts of Pakistan,”
I am glad that he acknowledges the struggle by the justice loving people of Pakistan who didn’t buy Musharraf’s national interest or national security type bogus cards and supported the judiciary.
“The present day Supreme Court is alive to the fact that it has been restored to its original position by unprecedented struggle carried out by a consort of such professional classes as lawyers, students, media persons and civil society at large.”
If I have to choose between judiciary and useless army, I will choose judiciary and constitution. It seems army chief is upset because of Asghar Khan case and missing persons cases. Also people like IK have openly said that if he will be in power then generals will also be made accountable in front of the law. Indeed these are some disturbing times for anti-Pakistan corrupt mercenary generals. Army will be the biggest hurdle in any genuine change against the forces of evil and status-quo. Prime example of Army’s support to status-quo is NRO which was given to the corrupt political and bureaucratic elite.
Kiyani needs to understand that if they follow the constitution and respect the principles of justice, human rights and freedom then people will not criticize them. Exceptions are those who are working on foreign agenda but if we look into it then we can see that most of them were supported by Army because of the pro-war stance by these people. If army wants respect then they have to come out of this American war and leave their role of mercenary army. They also need to focus on defending the country instead of taking part in political activities or taking control of land and economic resources of the country. Also accountability of culprits in the institution is also required to improve the image of the institution. We need a credible or even a strong defense but not at the cost of freedom, justice and human rights.
We support CJP and SC. Its our moral and constitutional responsibility to protect the constitution and country from these evil Khakis who only know how to serve their lust of power. They only love that Pakistan which is under their boots and we have to change this situation and inshaAllah it will be changed in a good way.
by Babar Sattar
The writer is a lawyer based in Islamabad.
The chief justice did the courageous thing by taking suo motu notice of the clandestine affair between Malik Riaz and his son Arsalan Iftikhar that had spread like wildfire through a crafty whispering campaign. And after putting the judicial wheels in motion to hold to account his son and Malik Riaz, and throwing his weight behind affixing the liability of the two in a transparent and impartial manner in an open court, he did the right thing by recusing himself from the case. Those who argue that the accusations rooted in gossip should have been shrugged off are wrong. The conduct in question might be that between two private individuals, but one of them being the CJ’s son, the insinuation was that illegal gratification was offered and accepted to influence the outcome of court cases pending before the Supreme Court.
From the disclosures made by journalists so far it is obvious that documents and accounts (and probably even videos?) were meticulously kept to drag the name of the CJ through dirt and consequently bring into disrepute the integrity and credibility of the apex court. The matter therefore didn’t relate to the CJ alone, but would bring under cloud the competence of the highest court of the land to dispense justice not adulterated by considerations of favour. And this in turn would bring into question the very notion of the existence and utility of rule of law in Pakistan by lending credence to the view that (i) law is not a shield for the weak but a weapon in the hands of the powerful to keep in subjugation the lesser mortals in society, and (ii) unimpeachable integrity is a defunct concept as every mortal is up for sale at the right price.
Such jaundiced view of the state and society is not a figment of cynical imagination but is rooted in the reality that the ordinary Joe is confronted with on an everyday basis. By all rational accounts we are living in a kleptocracy: a government of the extortionist, by the extortionist, for the extortionist. The state is in default of its contract with the citizen. You no longer have an entitlement to your rights even if you do your duty as a citizen. And consequently you have to pay for everything, even to protect your most basic rights to life, liberty and dignity. And if you are ready, willing and able to pay, it doesn’t matter if what you seek is right or wrong. State largesse flows through channels of personal patronage. Personal loyalty trumps merit. There is no distinction between honest and dirty money. And there are no principles remaining, only interests.
And consequently instinct demands that one accumulate as much wealth and influence as possible and use it to build social networks of protection to replace the role of the state. And it is people like Malik Riaz, who have mastered the ways of this ‘brave new world’ where money buys influence, influence yields more money, and with the use of money and influence to cajole the powerful and coerce the weak there are no limits to what you can accomplish. But not everyone in this state and society is comfortable with the rules of our evolving kleptocracy. And when someone who has reached the highest echelons of power within the state, like the CJ, refuses to be bought or otherwise inducted within the kleptocracy, the stakes go through the roof.
Within the kleptocracy that we are referring to, the kith and kin of the powerful do exceedingly well. Why should it be surprising that the mediocre son of our CJ grew a sense of entitlement to receive preferential treatment and climb the ropes without paying his dues? Does such lack of discretion and propriety reflect poorly on Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, the father? It probably does. But does it undermine his integrity or credibility as a judge and a public-office holder? Absolutely not. In exposing the dealings between himself and Arsalan Iftikhar, Malik Riaz has used the nuclear option. Why would anyone need to employ means of last resort in the event that quiet persuasion is working? According to media accounts, Malik Riaz leaked details of sponsoring the merry-making of Arsalan Iftikhar because his investment wasn’t paying off.
So what we have so far is this. By his own account, Malik Riaz paid Arsalan Iftikhar to influence the outcome of judicial proceedings pending before the Supreme Court. Was he forced to do so because the wily Arsalan was blackmailing poor Mr Malik? Improbable, and Mailk Riaz would need to adduce evidence to establish that he was at the receiving end of this clandestine relationship with the imprudent 34-year-old. As Arsalan Iftikhar was not holding court and adjudicating cases implicating Malik Riaz, he would in fact need to establish that the CJ was in fact blackmailing him while using his son as an agent. Without this, and in view of information disclosed by Malik Riaz himself, he could be charged for offering illegal gratification to influence a public servant.
This could make him liable under Section 165-A read with Sections 162 and 163 of the Pakistan Penal Code as well as Section 9 of the NAB Ordinance. If it were established that Arsalan Iftikhar accepted the gratification with a view to influence the discharge of functions by the office of the CJ or other public servants due to the exercise of his personal influence, he could also be liable under Sections 162 and 163 of the PPC. Now that details of this scandal are out in the open, it is essential for the apex court not to take a narrow view of this affair in the event that Malik Riaz backs off and doesn’t adduce any evidence before the court, but instead exercise its inquisitorial powers to collect and decipher facts to ensure that both Malik Riaz and Arsalan Iftikhar are held to account for their actions in accordance with the law.
In this debate, Malik Riaz must not be seen as a solitary individual. He might be a good friend, a loving father and a rich man who believes in charity. But he is also a phenomenon that highlights the growing predatory instincts of our society. This phenomenon has cultivated the myth of infallibility and immortality of the powerful within the society. It has defeated the conventional wisdom that if you are caught with hands in the cookie jar society holds you to account and respectable folk refuse to associate with such delinquents. It has established that irrespective of personal repute, money can buy the best professional assistance. It has proven that if cut a piece of the pie everyone is willing to play ball. This phenomenon has established an ethic of success that labels right and wrong as irrelevant for those who aim for upward professional and social mobility.
The CJ’s commendable action of dragging his son before an open court and laying his ethical failings in plain public view is a defining moment in the fight between continuity of the depraved status quo and the desire for change. As nothing succeeds like success, the strength of the entrenched kleptocracy is rooted not in its popularity but in its efficacy. Our ruling elites – across the political class, the khakis, the bureaucracy, the media and the lawyer fraternity etc – are mostly its beneficiaries.
The few who still have qualms about meddling in grime have turned apathetic having made their peace with the ‘ground reality’ they cannot change. In this environment, the action of the CJ to stand by law and principle, even as he subjects himself and his family to public scrutiny and possible embarrassment, has provided a unique opportunity to stand up and fight the kleptocracy. We must not fitter this opportunity away.
Arsalan to be punished in accordance with the law if proved guilty: Chief Justice–> Great to hear that in Pakistan
Just went through some of the remarks during the case proceedings in Arsalan Iftikhar and Malik Riaz case, shared by Nadeem Malik and Umar Cheema on facebook.
Here are few of the remarks:
Arsalan to be punished in accordance with the law if proved guilty: Chief Justice
We’re the followers of Muhammd (PBUH) who said he won’t spare if his daughter Fatima (RA) found guilty: Justice Khilji.
We’ll not spare anybody who tried to ruin the institution of judiciary, be he’s my son: Chief Justice
If Arsalan found guilty, law will take its course: Chief Justice
Great to see that happening in Pakistan.