Panama Papers case in SC: Judges-Lawyers arguments on Jan 10

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ISLAMABAD: (APP) Resuming hearing of the Panama papers case, the larger bench of Supreme court here Tuesday remarked that apex court has to uphold the constitution.

"We have taken oath to uphold the constitution. We are not a trial court", the bench said adding the apex court can not investigate the matter and then give judgment like a trial court.

A five-member larger bench of the apex court headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa and comprising Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed, Justice Ijaz Afzal Khan, Justice Gulzar Ahmad and Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan heard the case.

During the proceedings, Justice Ijaz Afzal remarked that disqualification of the prime minister on mere assumption would be a dangerous judicial precedent and "we don't want to set any such precedent".

He questioned as to whether it would be appropriate to give judgment on documents which did not fulfill the legal requirements .

The honourable judge asked as how conflict could be solved without recording evidence? Prime Minister's link with Panama papers and his speech are two different matters, he added.

During the course of hearing, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf lead counsel Naeem Bukhari continued his arguments .

Justice Azmat Saeed while addressing the PTI counsel remarked that he (Naeem Bukhari) should satisfy the court instead of making speech to the nation.

The PTI counsel is pressing the court to take decision on the basis of opinion without any evidence and the report he is referring to has been rejected by even FIA itself, then how the court can give judgment on such report.

Justice Asif Saeed Khosa told Bukhari that his research is extraordinary but what is the use of it when he himself asked the apex court to investigate the matter first and then give decision.

He also remarked that the matter before the court is a constitutional question with regard to disqualification, thus how the apex court can hold trial in this case at the moment.

Upon this, Naeem Bukhari said the lead counsel was Hamid Khan and he was just assisting him in the matter. Hamid Khan recused himself from the case and whole burden was shifted on his shoulders, he expressed.

Justice Asif Saeed Khosa asked, "Without any evidence can the court give verdict".

Taking his words back, Justice Asif Khosa said, "I should not have given an observation regarding Article 62 and 63".

The bench later adjourned hearing of four identical petitions filed by PTI and others seeking investigation into the Panama Papers till Wednesday (January 11).

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