ISLAMABAD, (SANA): The Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) has issued a contempt of court notice to former premier Raja Pervaiz Ashraf on trying to influence the court by writing a letter to Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry for constituting a commission to investigate the rental power projects (RPPs) scam case .
A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was hearing the former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf’s letter case on Thursday and ordered him to appear in person in two weeks before the bench.
During the proceedings, the chief justice said that the letter was sent to him through the registrar that was also signed by the principal secretary of the prime minister. Raja Pervaiz Ashraf’s letter is apparently an intervention in judicial proceedings, he said.
Advocate Wasim Sajjad, counsel of Raja Pervaiz, contended that his client was facing difficulties in the RPPs case and that is why the letter was written.
On this, the chief justice said that everyone in this country is facing commotions. ‘Why Raja Pervaiz Ashraf is trying to influence the judges?’ The court has already issued order in RPPs case that has to be implemented in any case.
Chief Justice continued saying that if the court will accept his request, then every future president and prime minister will write to the chief justice and the world would accuse the court of being influenced.
On this, Wasim Sajjad responded that thousands of citizens write to the chief justice daily for justice, on which the Chief Justice remarked that Raja Pervaiz Ashraf had written as a prime minister and not as an ordinary citizen.
The chief justice said that the review petition was withdrawn in the RPPs case, so how is it possible to revisit the court’s verdict and appoint the commission.
The court directed Wasim Sajjad to seek advice from his client as to whether he is going to withdraw his letter or not, and submit reply by Thursday.
Earlier, appearing before the court on notice, NAB Prosecutor General K K Agha submitted before the court that although he was not agreed upon the letter, however, if the court refers the matter to any other forum for probe then they have no objection.
Wasim Sajjad contended that his client had dispatched the letter to the Chief Justice of Pakistan through the Registrar Office of the court, adding that it was not aimed to influence the court.
He further contended that an impression was created in the media that if the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) decided the case in favour of Raja Pervaiz Ashraf then it would have been considered that the former prime minister used his influence.
The chief justice said the letter was written on the letterhead of prime minister that did not give a positive impression, adding that such type of dispatches should not be addressed to the court.
Justice Gulzar Ahmed also observed that such type of letters in the personal capacity of the prime minister should not be addressed to the court.
The court said that “It could have been possible for him to appear in person or through a counsel instead of writing the letter.”The court added that Ashraf had already exhausted legal remedies.
“We direct notice to be issued to Raja Pervez Ashraf under the article 204(3) read with contempt of court ordinance of 2003 to file a reply as to why contempt proceeding should not be initiated against him,” the court ordered.
Adjourning the hearing, the bench ordered Raja Pervez Ashraf to appear before the court in two weeks time.