SC summons retired Gen Faiz Hameed, others in deposed judge Shaukat Siddiqui's dismissal case

SC summons retired Gen Faiz Hameed, others in deposed judge Shaukat Siddiqui's dismissal case


The CJP had adjourned the case for Friday (today)

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ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Friday summoned former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief retired Gen Faiz Hameed and others while hearing plea of Islamabad High Court judge Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui's removal. 

A five-member bench, led by CJP Qazi Faez Isa and comprising Justice Amin-ud-Din Khan, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Justice Hasan Azhar Rizvi and Justice Irfan Saadat Khan, conducted proceedings of the case. 

As Friday's hearing started, Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa asked if the allegations levelled by Shaukat Siddiqui were true. He then asked, "Was Siddiqui dismissed on a speech made about these allegations? Is the general to whom you want to be party in the case, himself wanted to assume power in 2018 General Elections?"  

The chief justice asked for whom the accused persons were working or wanted to give benefit. Addressing the petitioner's lawyer, the CJP then said, "You did not make them party against whom you levelled allegations. If the allegations made by Siddiqui are true, then these army generals were facilitating someone else." 

The notices were also issued to former IHC chief justice Anwar Khan Kasi, former registrar of the Supreme Court Arbab Muhammad Arif and retired Brig Irfan Ramay. 

Proceedings were broadcast live on the apex court's website as well as on its YouTube channel. Senior counsel Hamid Khan represented the former IHC judge in the case.

Hamid Khan said he was seeking 'impleadment' of the seven respondents. 

The counsel for bar associations, Barrister Salahuddin, said he was also seeking impleadement of the same persons, except for Anwar Kasi, as he was already impleaded as respondent number 4 in his petition. 

The CJP then asked Khan if all the allegations made by the petitioner in his plea and speech were correct, to which he replied, "Yes, absolutely." He said he was not saying anything without taking responsibility for that. 

The CJP said his allegations mean that the [army generals] did not benefit themselves but their action caused harm to someone else and another one benefitted. 

The CJP remakred If allegations were true, he had challenged the Constitution of Pakistan. He asked if the people in Siddiqui's petition were either benefiting themselves or someone else. If those people were facilitating someone else, more people would also get trapped in this case, he highlighted. 

CJP Isa also read out points from Siddiqui's speech and asked, "Who were they trying to benefit?".  Khan said they wanted to get the results of 2018 polls of their own choice.

The CJP asked who was the beneficiary of all this facilitation and was army an independent institution or subordinate to government?. Khan replied that it was a subordinate institution under the Constitution.

Barrister Salahuddin said things should be done step-by-step, at which the CJP said everything was interconnected.

Salahuddin said the allegations were also levelled that manoeuvring was done within the judiciary by certain military officers to keep one individual out of electoral politics.

The CJP asked Salahuddin why he was shying from taking names to which he named Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif and his opponents.

"What is the interest of Islamabad and Karachi bar associations in the matter? Is your only concern to secure pensionary benefits? asked CJP. 

At this, Barrister Salahuddin replied that their interest and leading prayer was "that if there is some judicial manipulation that had taken place if those allegations were correct, then the truth must be out and the guilty parties must also be punished for those actions."

Thursday's proceedings 

Earlier during proceedings on Thursday, the Supreme Court had adjourned the hearing of the case for Friday (today), giving one day's time to make former DG of ISI, Faiz Hameed, and others party to the case.

Hamid Khan came to the rostrum and said the bench had been changed. Justice Umar Atta Bandial, Justice Sardar Tariq and Justice Ijazul Hassan were in the earlier bench. "I have no objection to the present bench either," he added.

CJP Isa said Justice Tariq and Justice Ijazul Ahsan refused to join the bench, and he did not remove anyone.

The chief justice said the country was heading towards democracy and the apex court was also becoming a democratic institution.

He said he tried to proceed democratically by consensus. Those who think they have become journalist by holding a mobile phone in hand should be aware that Practice and Procedure Act has become a law, he added.

Advocate Hamid Khan said democracy is currently in trouble.

Advocate Khan read the script of the speech of Mr Siddiqui delivered to the Rawalpinid Bar in which he said the ISI pressured judges to get decisions on their whim.

CJP Isa stopped Advocate Khan and asked him whether former DG of ISI Faiz Hameed was made a party to the dispute. The lawyer replied in the negative.

The CJP said Mr Siddiqui claimed that he was dismissed without giving him a chance to defend him. “Now you are trying to get a verdict without hearing Faiz Hameed,” he remarked.

He observed that Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui as a judge would never have given a decision against anyone without hearing him.

“It is possible that those facing allegations will confirm the allegations of Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui,” CJP Isa added.

Justice Mandokhel observed many people later admitted that they had worked under pressure.

Hamid Khan and the Bar Councils requested the apex court to allow to make Faiz Hameed party to the case.

CJP Isa, seeing Advocate Khan perplexed, observed if you are hesitating, the hearing could be adjourned to January.

The chief justice remarked that the court would not allow to blame those who are not party to the dispute.

If you don't want to make him a party, file application afresh by removing his name, the CJP said.

The case was telecast live. The chief justice headed a larger bench that includes Justice Aminuddin, Justice Jamal Mandokhel, Justice Hassan Azhar Rizvi and Justice Irfan Saadat Khan. 

Barrister Salahuddin appeared before the court on behalf of the federal government. He raised objection to the case when the CJP asked him whether the government would oppose the case. 

It may be noted that last week the Supreme Court had fixed the petition for hearing. 

The court adjourned the case for a date after winter break.