SJC gives last chance to Justice Farrukh to produce witness in Panama case

SJC gives last chance to Justice Farrukh to produce witness in Panama case

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) gave the last chance to Lahore High Court (LHC) judge Justice Farrukh Irfan to produce witness in Panama case till next hearing.

A SJC five-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, heard the reference.

The reference was filed by Nazar Muhammad Chohan, a former bureaucrat of district management group, against the sitting LHC judge Justice Farrukh Irfan on alleged involvement in offshore companies scam revealed through Panama papers.

During the course of proceedings, bench said council would record the statement of Justice Farrukh Irfan if he failed to produce witness on the next date of hearing.

The chief justice said the witnesses would be closed after recording the statement.

He also expressed annoyance over seeking of adjournment by Justice Farrukh Irfan. He observed that the case was pending since last three years.

Hamid Khan, counsel for Justice Farrukh, said witness Sanjev Kumar Patel was in Dubai where his daughter was in Coma at a hospital while other witnesses Aseeb ur Rehman, Nisar Bhatti and Syed Munashar Ali were in London.

He said the witnesses could not appear before the council due to closure of Pakistani airspace. The chief justice said next hearing would be held in any case except a war like situation.

He reminded Hamid Khan that on previous hearing, he told that his client would produce former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhary as a witness in the case.

Hamid Khan responded that former chief justice was in Islamabad and could be produced anytime. He pleaded the court to give one month time to produce witnesses.

The chief justice said the court was giving last chance to produce witnesses. He asked the counsel to assure the council for production of witnesses on next hearing and adjourned hearing till April 8.