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July 8, 2019

Judge attested evidence by not denying video: Maryam

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July 8, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz on Sunday took a jibe at the accountability court judge Arshad Malik over what she termed his helplessness in signing an ‘already drafted’ press release, in which the latter had refuted the controversial claims made by her in a press conference a day earlier.

“To the honourable judge who passed a verdict against his conscience after being subjected to blackmailing and coercion: I can understand that you must have signed on an already drafted press release under compulsion like the verdict. Thank you very much! You have attested the evidence by not denying the video. The rest to be revealed in Mandi Bahauddin…,” Maryam said on Twitter earlier in the day.

Meanwhile, PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb also said that judge Arshad Malik did not deny the conversation recorded on tape had taken place and asked why, if he had faced pressure from Sharifs camp, he had not reported it previously.

“Why did he not report to the Supreme Court supervisory judge about the threats, bribes and blackmail?” she asked reporters. In response to Maryam Nawaz’s tweet, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said the incumbent government has directed the concerned institutions to conduct forensic audit of audio and video, which was showed by Maryam.

It was decided on Saturday to conduct forensic audit of audio and video of accountability court judge Arshad Malik shown by Maryam in her press conference, she said while talking to a private news channel. After completion of forensic audit, she categorically said legal action would be taken against responsible, and all information regarding the matter would be revealed before the public and media.

The special assistant said the press conference had badly exposed the awful characters of Maryam and Shahbaz Sharif. “We will not conceal any minor information from the nation after completion of forensic audit,” she assured.

Firdous also alleged that both the makers of audio and video and then playing them were certified liars.

In tweets, she explained that one was a murderer and hooligan gang head while the other was a well-known character of Calibri font, which was benamidar. “Nawaz Sharif is in jail, then in what capacity, Maryam Safdar has been using the official bullet-proof vehicle since long,” she wondered.

On the other hand, the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Secretary General Nayyar Hussain Bokhari said the Supreme Court of Pakistan must take notice of the so-called judge video scandal.

“It was sad to see the judiciary's reputation being questioned,” Bokhari said, adding that the Supreme Court should conduct an open hearing over the alleged leaked video of the accountability court judge.

The PPP leader furthercommented that the party demanded that truths from the past be brought forward and "the soul of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was still awaiting justice after many decades".

Bokhari said Justice (retd) Nasim Hasan Shah’s confession is on record and Justice (retd) Abdul Qayyum's conversation, too, has been revealed. On the other hand, he said, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal has "become controversial due to his one-sided accountability".

He said the Supreme Court needed to play its role in order to ensure the idea of a free and independent judiciary. The PPP Information Secretary, Nafeesa Shah, termed the video scandal an eye-opener. "After the NAB, the accountability courts' reputation, too, has come into question," she said.

"Selected Prime Minister Imran Khan should keep his morale up for the party has just started," she added. The Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq demanded formation of a judicial commission to probe the alleged video of judge Arshad Malik.

Holding a press conference in Lahore, Sirajul Haq said the video clip was a “question mark” on the judicial system of the country. He said a decision regarding “selected and elected” has yet to be made despite a year has passed since the new government took over. He slammed the government for pushing the country into slavery of the International Monetary Fund. “The problem is not that of the Senate chairman, but inflation,” he said.

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