PML-N continues to malign the judiciary; yet at the same time former prime minister and party head Nawaz Sharif seeks relief such as clubbing the three references against him. Nawaz Sharif’s appeal maintains that filing three separate references is illegal and unconstitutional, besides being in violation of the fundamental rights. Three days ago, the accountability court had turned down former prime minister’s request for clubbing the three references. Supreme Court registrar office had also rejected his petition to all the three references raising objections on it, which has been re-submitted to the Supreme Court. CJP Mian Saqib Nisar will hear Nawaz Sharif’s appeal against the registrar decision in his chamber today to decide if it is maintainable or not. On November 15, the Chief Justice of Pakistan will also hear PTI lawmakers appeal against registrar’s decision not to entertain their petition against PML-N and PPP’s alleging they received foreign funds.
Deposed prime minister and PML-N chief was furious over the Supreme Court’s detailed verdict on his rejected review petitions. Earlier, he had been critical of the judiciary and military accusing them of a conspiracy. After the verdict of five-member bench of the Supreme Court, he during his speeches in his GT road rally while leaving Islamabad for Lahore, had said that none of the prime ministers could complete his term due to establishment and judiciary’s alliance. He conveniently forgot that he has been instrumental in their ousters. He tried to convince the people that he had been wronged, and continued with the litany as to why he had been disqualified. PML-N leaders have been lambasting judiciary and establishment day in and day out, knowing full well that they will not respond to every piece of criticism or vitriolic, because they speak through their verdicts.
The court had listened to his rhetoric and litany that he was disqualified only for iqama and not on corruption charges. The court in its detailed judgment knocked the bottom out of his pretence and declared that the former PM tried to fool the people, Parliament, and the court in the Panama Papers case. “He (Sharif) tried to fool the people inside and outside Parliament. He even tried to fool the court without realising that ‘you can fool all the people for some of the time, some of the people all the time but you cannot fool all the people all the time’. Refuge in evasive, equivocal and non-committal replies does not always help,” said the 23-page judgment. Meanwhile, PML-N issued a statement rejecting the top court’s related remarks made in the judgment and used derogatory remarks not only against the verdict but against the judges also.
The ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) rejected the detailed verdict of the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers review case. A statement issued after a high-level party huddle in Islamabad last week said: “The verdict is an “awful example of prejudice, bigotry, anger and provocation; the language used in the detailed verdict was also not up to the judicial standards.” It further stated that reason behind the damages to the state was questionable judgments issued under ‘doctrine of necessity’ that allowed ‘bandits’ to rule the country. No one in the party has the courage to tell him that he should come out of confrontational mode and be cautious while commenting on the superior courts. However, according to reports senior party leaders believed that Sharif was annoying the judiciary at a time when crucial cases are pending against him in the courts.
There is a perception that the problems were of his creation, as he had refused to form a commission under special legislation suggested by the opposition, and also failed to agree over the terms of reference. Immediately after the release of Panama Papers, Nawaz Sharif had offered himself for accountability and promised to provide all evidence about sources of his assets. But his sons and his daughter issued statements that contradicted each other that caused more confusion and mistrust. According to prosecution, he neither gave satisfactory answers to the Supreme Court nor to the JIT, nor utilized the opportunity provided to him in the accountability court. Reportedly he is considering clipping the powers of judiciary through another piece of legislation. The politicians on the political divide with their senseless brinkmanship continue pushing the country on to a dangerous precipice, which is very dreadful and potentially disastrous.