SC orders Imran to resubmit reply till Aug 28 in contempt case; word ‘shameful’ used by Imran is like abusing whole judiciary

SC orders Imran to resubmit reply till Aug 28 in contempt case; word ‘shameful’ used by Imran is like abusing whole judiciary

ISLAMABAD, (SANA): Supreme Court of Pakistan has rejected Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman, Imran Khan’s two rejoinders submitted in contempt of court case and ordered yet again to submit his detailed statement by August 28. It was said in the order of the court that petition containing complaints of Imran Khan are under hearing in the election tribunals. The bench said that if the court takes the pressure, the people would urge for conducting hearing of their cases otherwise they would abuse the court. The court said the word ‘shameful’ used by Imran Khan against judiciary is like abusing the whole judiciary. The court said that in reply of Imran the word ‘shameful’ has not been defined. Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry said everyone who loses election levels allegations of rigging on the winner, adding that the big change has occurred after 2007 it could not be stopped.

A three-member bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Jawwad S Khawaja, Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed on Friday conducted hearing of the case pertaining to the contempt of court notice issued to the PTI Chairman Imran khan.

During the hearing, Hamid Khan, the counsel for Imran Khan, informed the apex court that his client could not even think of committing contempt of court.

Chief Justice Iftikhar asked Hamid whether he had prepared a written response to the contempt of court notice issued against his client.

Hamid Khan submitted a short reply, which said that Imran Khan’s remarks were aimed at the Election Commission of Pakistan and not the Supreme Court. The reply says Imran respect the constitution, law and judiciary and even could not think of committing contempt of court.

The bench had termed the counsel’s reply as unsatisfactory and adjourned the hearing to 11:30 am.

Later, in a one-page written response submitted to the apex court, Imran Khan reiterated his earlier stance that his remarks were targeting the ECP and not the judiciary.

The PTI chief, in his reply, stated that 45 days had passed since the May 11 elections and no one from the Election Commission of Pakistan was paying any heed to his complaints regarding failure to conduct free and fair elections.

Imran Khan also mentioned the various struggles he had undertaken during the movement for the restoration of the judiciary.

The court had given Imran Khan time till 11:30 am Friday to submit his second and revised reply in the contempt of court case but rejected it once again, terming it “disappointing”. The court termed his earlier response as “insufficient”.

The Court expressed disappointment over the written reply submitted by the counsel of Imran Khan in the contempt of court case.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry ruled that Imran Khan’s reply ‘is not acceptable.’

Chief Justice ordered that a satisfactory reply should be submitted before the court and that the court is ready to give sufficient time for the purpose.

The counsel of Imran Khan, Hamid Khan maintained that Imran Khan has not committed the contempt of court.

Imran and his lawyer were in court before the allotted time with the written two-paragraph reply. In his reply he stated that he did not use the word “shameful” for the judiciary, rather for the presiding officer in the election process.

“Can such words be used for the judiciary?” asked Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry during the hearing.

Chief Justice added that since Imran Khan is a leader and public figure, such words and statements are not expected from him.

Lawyer Hamid Khan said Imran Khan had complaints regarding the Election Commission of Pakistan however Imran holds no disrespect for the court or the judiciary.

Imran Khan stated that he and the party strongly support the judiciary and had worked hard during the movement for restoration of the judiciary.

“The restoration of the judiciary had been on my agenda. I had also spent eight days in jail for that”, said Imran in court.

The court deemed the replies as inadequate. The words allegedly used for the judiciary can be punishable by law according to the court’s decision at the end of the hearing.

Justice Jawwad S Khawaja said that how you can make difference between the judiciary of the Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and how you can say that the judiciary of KPK is better and the judiciary of Punjab is worse.

Chief Justice said that the court has no relation with anybody and the dignity of the institution should be respected. He said no one would be allowed to violate the respect of the judiciary. Chief justice hundreds and thousands of people speak against judiciary daily but the court did not consider them worth of response. Chief justice said that when the matter is in tribunal then the court could not interfere in this matter. He said if PTI leadership was in hurry and wanted early hearing of the complaints against election then they should have informed the court and could would have heard these complaints immediately.

Chief Justice said that the person who is flag-bearer of the justice is disgracing the court. Chief Justice said that Imran Khan’ words would have importance, but the court would not accommodate anybody out of way and no special benefit would be given to anybody.

Chief Justice, addressing the PTI leader, said that you did not adopt the proper way. The court said that the news is on air in the media that Imran Khan said that he would not tender apology in the contempt of court case. The bench said that as to when the court asked him to tender apology. Chief Justice said that no one is above the judiciary as an institution.

Chief Justice said that Imran Khan should have the knowledge of article 225 of the constitution. Justice Jawwad s Khawaja said that under article 175 of the constitution Supreme Court and high courts are judiciary.

Chief Justice said that the judiciary can not interfere when the case is in the tribunal. Chief Justice said that Hamid Khan has the knowledge of constitution and Imran khan should have the knowledge of constitution.

Chief Justice said that PTI should wait for decisions regarding allegations over the elections. Chief Justice said that we have traveled a long distance for freedom of the judiciary and no one would be allowed to defame the judiciary.

Justice Jawwad s Khawaja said that if there is no respect of the Judiciary the judges should leave the courts for home, adding that if there are evidences against any returning officer they should be presented in the court.

He said that respect of judiciary is binding upon the all and behaviour of disgracing the judiciary would not be tolerated. Justice Jawwad said the judges are prison fishes in glass, adding even the judges could not respond to the criticism made against them. The court adjourned hearing of the case till August 28.

Meanwhile, talking to media while going to the Supreme Court, Imran Khan refused to tender an apology in the contempt of court case.

He said that he and his party always respected judiciary and participated in the struggle for independent judiciary.

‘Democracy is impossible without independent judiciary’ he said.

The PTI chief said that he had not said anything wrong hence there is no point for any apology.

He said that white paper will be issued against the worst rigging in the elections.

Imran Khan addressed the media after the contempt of court hearing and said, “My disappointment and criticism was aimed towards the presiding officer for the elections.”

Addressing questions of an apology, Imran Khan said “If there is no contempt, what should I be apologizing for?”

He stated that he respected the judiciary and would soon bring forward a white-paper as evidence to show that rigging took place in the election process.

“I have not done or said anything that is punishable by law, my statements were made in the interest of democracy in Pakistan”, he added.

Imran Khan reiterated that his party sacrificed the most for the independence of judiciary. He said that he has only demanded thumb print verification of votes in four constituencies.

Imran Khan had vowed on Thursday that he would stand by his stance, even if it meant he is sentenced and disqualified from being elected into the assemblies.

The PTI chief asked if a citizen of Pakistan had the right to seek justice from the Supreme Court over the alleged rigging during the May 11, 2013 elections.

“If this is contempt, then I do not think they know the meaning of contempt.”

It is worth mentioning here that the apex court had issued a notice to the PTI chief over his “critical and derogatory” remarks against the judiciary and judges of the apex court. It said that Imran Khan apparently had tried to incite hatred against the apex court in one of his interactions with the media.

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