According to the news report, the Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb has expressed that the coalition government will resist any decision made by Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial in favor of Imran Khan, the PTI chief, regarding the Punjab polls delay case.
She accused the CJP of being influenced by his mother-in-law and stated that such a verdict based on personal relationships and not the Constitution will not be accepted. CJP
Minister’s Statement (CJP Bandial’s)
She further added that those who undermine the Constitution will not be spared and the nation will not forgive them. The Minister’s statement came after a leaked audio clip of CJP Bandial’s mother-in-law and the wife of a PTI lawyer went viral on social media.
As per the report, the leaked audio clip allegedly features a conversation between a PTI lawyer’s wife and CJP Bandial’s mother-in-law discussing a high-profile case and the ongoing political crisis.
Marriyum Aurangzeb criticized the clip and found it strange that a woman was speaking on behalf of those who had previously thrown shoes at her son-in-law’s poster.CJP
She further added that the country suffers when justice and the Constitution are compromised due to foreign agents, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, children, and mothers-in-law, and as a result, it is plagued by problems caused by people like Imran Khan, who has caused inflation and unemployment.
The Minister stated that elections will be held on time and not based on the advice of anyone’s mother-in-law, including Bajwa’s.
In a sarcastic comment aimed at Imran Khan, the Minister advised him not to deceive the people and lie in front of the nation. She further added that this was the reason why a “fraudster” had to cover his face with a black canister.
She also criticized Imran for being “shameless” and admitting that he dissolved the provincial assemblies of Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa based on the advice of former army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa. The Minister accused Imran of insulting the people of these provinces and their representatives and dissolving the assemblies elected by the people just to maintain his grip on power.CJP
Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F)
Amid the members’ desk-thumping, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) leader Asad Mehmood declared that they will fight until the last resort of the Constitution and law to restore democracy and the Constitution.CJP
He denounced the Chief Justice’s reluctance to form a full bench and accused the judiciary of bias towards the PTI and Imran Khan. Mehmood said that they will never accept judicial martial law and accused the CJP of wanting to divide the nation.
Khawaja Saad Rafique, a PML-N
Khawaja Saad Rafique, a PML-N member, claimed that the judiciary was not independent or impartial and referred to Javed Hashmi’s claims in 2014 about a nexus between judges and generals to oust the PML-N government. He added that no political party would tolerate the imposition of one person on the nation.
PPP Senator Sherry Rehman alleged that the court’s decision aimed to divide Pakistan and urged the judiciary to find a way out of the constitutional crisis.
Raja Pervaiz Ashraf
The only opposition member in support of the apex court was Mohsin Leghari, the recently-elected PTI MNA from Rajanpur. He urged Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf not to allow members to discuss judges’ conduct as per the Constitution. Leghari also defended Imran Khan and the judges, stating that they were not present in the house to defend themselves.
Leghari paid tribute to the CJP and stated that the elections should be held within 90 days. He also mentioned that the courts should make decisions based on justice, without fear of the consequences. The individual presiding over the NA session announced that the proceedings would be suspended until Wednesday.
In another decision, the cabinet decided to write to the court for a hearing of a presidential reference regarding the judicial murder of PPP founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto by a full court. The cabinet agreed that the reference over the judicial murder, pending for the last 12 years, should be taken up and decided by the full court.
The law minister stated that they would write to the apex court to form a full court bench to hear the reference, hoping to rectify the historic mistake in judicial history, as the world knows that ZAB’s case was a “judicial murder.”
Lawmakers in the lower house of parliament criticized the judiciary’s latest decision and declared that the ruling on polls date would not be implemented at any cost.
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
They demanded a full court to hear the issue, a demand long held by the government. The request was made to Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial to reconsider and form a bench comprising all members to address the crisis. Additionally, they highlighted similarities between the current decision and the previous one that resulted in the crisis. The reference pertains to both the verdict regarding the date of the polls and the execution of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.
PM Shehbaz Sharif equated the decision with the ‘judicial murder’ of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and said that “his murder took place on April 4, 1979, and on the same date The polls ruling resulted in the unfortunate repetition of the episode today. The federal cabinet categorically rejected the verdict during a meeting and directed the legal team to find ways to repulse the decision.
Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar said the government wanted free and fair elections across the country simultaneously and had reservations about the decision. He added that the legal team would decide about the future course of action after consultations.