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November 30, 2018

Farm episode: Swati did injustice to poor family, says SC

Top Story

November 30, 2018

ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Mian Saqib Nisar on Thursday observed that injustice had been meted out to a poor family by Federal Minister for Science and Technology Azam Swati and the apex court might frame charges against him under Article 62(1)(f).

The top judge said this while heading a three-member bench that resumed hearing of the suo motu case. The chief justice headed the bench comprising Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Ijazul Ahsen as members.

Justice Nisar asked how Azam Swati could be spared, as the poor girls had been sent to jail. He said a case should have been registered on the report of Joint Investigation Team (JIT), as the poor family was beaten up and threatened.

The JIT constituted for probing the transfer of IGP Islamabad has found that federal minister Azam Swati had misused his office and was given special treatment by the authorities during his son’s quarrel with the family of a citizen.

Headed by Director General NAB Irfan Mangi, the JIT submitted its report to the Supreme Court on Thursday. ”Muhammad Azam Khan Swati, Senator/Federal Minister for Science and Technology, was given special treatment by the relevant authorities,” says the report. By virtue of his post he (Swati) wielded his influence and prevailed upon the authorities by misusing his office and profile leading to arbitrary and discriminatory treatment to the citizen, Niaz Muhammad’s family, at the hands of police.

After considering the oral and documentary evidence available on record so far, the JIT is of the opinion that the stated position of Swati family and his servants on cow grazing had no basis whatsoever and thus found to be false, concocted, fabricated, inconsistent and factually incorrect, says the report.

The chief justice had constituted the JIT on November 2 to determine whether or not Swati was involved in the transfer of IGP and collect information about his assets and properties. The JIT was constituted during the hearing of IGP Jan Mohammad transfer case who was transferred on October 27 after he allegedly refused to take action on a complaint filed by federal minister's son regarding a fight with a family at their farmhouse.

The JIT report observed that the police since the occurrence of the incident did not hold investigation in a just and fair manner. “In view of the above circumstances, actions and inactions by the police pursuant to the FIR, one can easily conclude deliberate negligence of police officials in proceeding with the investigation,” says the report.

It said the police in fact colluded with Swati’s family in furtherance to their designs. The chief justice inquired as to how poor and disenfranchised individuals had been given threats. The chief justice asked Barrister Ali Zafar to submit reply on behalf of his client (Swati) to the report, adding that Azam Swati be summoned by 4pm.

The counsel informed the court that Swati was in Vienna attending the International Atomic Energy Agency Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Science and Technology. At this, the chief justice questioned if ministers of this sort should be appointed, and noted that charges against Swati could be framed around Article 62(1)(f).

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