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Friday February 23, 2024

Military court trials: Contempt plea filed against defence secy

December 05, 2023

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court was requested on Monday to initiate contempt of court proceedings against Lt General (Retd)) Hamood-uz-Zaman Khan, Secretary Ministry of Defence, for deliberately disregarding and violating its order, declaring trial of civilians in military courts as unconstitutional

Fahim Zaman Khan, Mahnaz Rahman, Prof. Dr. A. H. Nayyar and Syed Zulfiqar Hussain Gilani have filed a contempt petition in the apex court through Faisal Siddiqui advocate under Article 204 of the Constitution read with Sections 3 & 12 of the Contempt of Court Ordinance 2003 for initiating contempt proceedings in respect of order passed by the apex court on October 23, 2023 in the petition, challenging trial of civilians in military courts.

A general overview of the Supreme Court of Pakistans building. — SC website
A general overview of the Supreme Court of Pakistan's building. — SC website

They have made Lt General ® Hamood-uz-Zaman, Secretary Ministry of Defense as respondent. It is submitted that the alleged contemnor has wilfully disobeyed, disregarded, and flouted the direction of the court, given vide order dated: 23.10.2023, passed in Constitutional Petition No.24 to 28, 30 & 35 of 2023, and this is a clear-cut case of contempt against the alleged contemnor, they contended.

The prayed the apex court to initiate proceedings of contempt of court against the Hamood Uz Zaman Khan for deliberately and malafidely disregarding, and violating its order.

It is pertinent to mention here that a five-member larger bench of the apex court headed by Justice Ijazul Ahsen and comprising Justice Munib Akhtar, Justice Yahya Afridi, Justice Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi and Justice Ayesha A Malik on October 23, 2023 had declared trial of civilians in the military courts as unconstitutional and held that 103 persons and others who may be placed in relation to the events arising from May 9th and 10th May could be tried by criminal courts established under the ordinary or special law of the land.