Saturday December 04, 2021

Justice Isa reference: Farogh faces objection for representing govt

June 03, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Barrister Farogh Naseem faced objection for his representation of the government in the presidential reference filed against Supreme Court judge Justice Qazi Faez Isa on Tuesday, a day after the former law minister said he had resigned from the post, Geo News reported.

A 10-member full court, headed by Justice Umar Ata Bandial, resumed hearing of the case wherein the former law minister appeared as an advocate for the federal government.

During the hearing, Justice Isa’s lawyer Munir A Malik said Naseem will have to present a certificate from the attorney general in order to be deemed appropriate for the representation. “[I]respect Farogh Naseem, but do object to his representation of the federal government,” Malik told the court.

In his arguments, the former law minister said he will also represent Special Assistant to PM on Accountability Shahzad Akbar. “I was made a party to the case in a personal capacity, Irfan Qadir (former attorney general) will represent me,” said Naseem.

Malik said according to the rules, the federal government was not allowed to hire a private lawyer. However, Justice Bandial said the judge’s advocate should not raise objection and let the case proceed further. “The summer vacation is right around the corner and we want the case to proceed,” remarked the judge.

It may be mentioned here that Naseem’s resignation was accepted by Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday. “I will represent the federation in the case and therefore I have tendered my resignation as the law minister,” Naseem said, adding he had great respect for the judges and the judiciary.

In February this year, the Supreme Court had asked the federal government to explain in court whether the Asset Recovery Unit (ARU) was empowered to conduct an inquiry against a sitting judge of the apex court.

The results of the inquiry, later placed before President Arif Alvi, had resulted in a presidential reference filed against Justice Isa back in May 2019.

Justice Isa had been accused of failing to disclose assets belonging to his wife and children in his tax returns.