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July 31, 2019

Justice Isa to challenge presidential reference in SC

Top Story

July 31, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court Judge Justice Qazi Faez Isa is likely to challenge the presidential reference against him in the Supreme Court by invoking Article 184(3) of the Constitution, sources confided to The News.

Justice Isa is facing the presidential reference in the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC). Justice Isa held a detailed discussion with senior lawyer and former attorney general for Pakistan Munir A Malik about what potential legal option could be adopted to defend his case.

Malik has recently returned from California, US to plead the case of Justice Isa. Sources confirmed that after thorough deliberations, Malik advised Justice Isa to invoke Article 184(3) of the Constitution and challenge the reference in the Supreme Court.

Senior lawyers, including Hamid Khan, Kamran Murtaza, Ali Ahmed Kurd, Rashid A Rizvi and other prominent lawyers may be included in Justice Isa’s panel.

President Arif Alvi had filed references against Justice Isa and Justice KK Agha of Sindh High Court, alleging that they owned properties in London but they did not disclose them in their tax returns.

Justice Isa however rejected the allegations saying the properties were owned by his children. Since the filing of reference, lawyers have extended maximum support to Justice Isa. Majority of legal wizards have advised Justice Isa to invoke Article 184(3) of the Constitution. They were of the view that a test case of 2007 of former Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry verses President Pervez Musharraf was available wherein a 13-member larger bench of the apex court headed by Justice (R) Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday quashed the presidential reference against Justice Chaudhry on the basis of mala fide intentions.

It is to recall that both Justice Chaudhry as well as other petitioners, including the Supreme Court Bar Association and Pakistan Bar Council, had also challenged the presidential reference filed with the Supreme Court against him.

Later on, a larger bench quashed the reference, declaring that it [the reference] was filed on mala fide intentions. The SJC has conducted its three hearings and issued a show cause notice to Justice Isa.

However, sources said after deliberating with Munir A Malik he will soon file a petition with the Supreme Court invoking Article 184(3) of the Constitution. Meanwhile, three eminent lawyers have moved a resolution to the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) requesting to file a petition with the Supreme Court under Article 184(3) of the Constitution, challenging the presidential reference filed against Justice Isa on the grounds that it was filed on mala fide intentions.

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