PM’s disqualification: SC rejects plea for formation of larger bench

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) on Monday rejected the plea for formation of larger bench regarding Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s disqualification.
Justice Jawad Khawaja said the chief justice has the authority to form a larger bench; therefore a separate petition should be filed.
A three-member bench led by Justice Jawad Khwaja heard the case filed for disqualification of Nawaz Sharif.
Petitioner Gauhar Nawaz Sindhu argued that during a parliamentary session Nawaz Sharif had said that Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri requested to meet the army chief. However, ISPR affirmed that the government had requested army to mediate in order to resolve political crisis.
Quoting Interior Minister Chauhdry Nisar, he said that in one of his statements Nisar had stated that army is non-political and ISPR gave the statement after consulting the government.
The petitioner said that Prime Minister should be disqualified on the basis of misquoting ISPR.
Another petitioner Ishaq Khakwani’s counsel Irfan Qadri said that Supreme Court has disqualified several members of parliament in many registered cases. Nawaz Sharif should also be disqualified on basis of this case and the Election Commission of Pakistan should be ordered to denotify Prime Minister.
Justice Jawad responded that the case hearing was required to begin at 11.30 am but petitioner Gauhar wasn’t present and now the judges have to join a larger bench for hearing of another case. Therefore, the case haring will have to be postponed.
During the hearing, there was an exchange of harsh words between Ifran Qadri and Justice Jawad Khwaja. Irfan Qadri argued by saying that the case was called ‘out of turn’. Justice Jawad in response accepted it as a fault to which Qadri retaliated by saying that it is rather a mistake caused by the current political circumstances.
The court, ultimately refused the petition for forming a larger bench regarding disqualification of Nawaz Sharif. Justice Jawad remarked that only chief justice has the authority to form a larger bench, therefore a separate petition is required. The case hearing was adjourned until October 2.

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