close
Friday April 19, 2024

SC moved for suspending bills not signed by President Arif Alvi

Petitioner prays that during the pendency of his petition, all actions in view of the legislation be suspended

By Sohail Khan
August 23, 2023
An undated image of the Supreme Court of Pakistan building. — SC website
An undated image of the Supreme Court of Pakistan building. — SC website 

ISLAMABAD: The controversy over President Alvi’s claim he did not sign the two legislations amending the Official Secrets Act and Pakistan Army Act reached the Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday after a plea was filed praying for suspending both the legislations.

Advocate Zulfiqar Ahmed Bhutta filed the petition with the apex court under Article 184(3) of the Constitution, making the Federation of Pakistan through secretary, Law & Justice Division, respondent. He prayed to the apex court to direct the Federation for forwarding the matter regarding the Army Act Bill 2023 and Official Secrets Act Bill 2023 to it under Article 186 (Advisory Jurisdiction) for seeking its opinion on the question of law regarding the legal status of both bills within next 10 days.

The petitioner also prayed that during the pendency of his petition, all actions in view of the legislation be suspended. He submitted that the belated tweet of President Dr Arif Alvi, claiming that he did not sign the bills, led to a constitutional controversy, which not only started in Pakistan but all over the world.

He contended that the amendments to both laws were very sensitive as they would not only affect the accused but also the general public. Besides, this dubious litigation is a violation of Article 4 (Right of individuals to be dealt with in accordance with law, etc) and Article 5, which speaks about loyalty of state and obedience to the Constitution. Even it will affect Article 40, which relates to world peace as existence of any harsh law may put people under unseen fear.