ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Umer Ata Bandial on Tuesday observed that everyone deserves respect and good manners therefore he greeted everyone with “Good to see you.”
Giving a clarification on his demeanour, CJP Bandial — during a case hearing today — addressed lawyer Asghar Sabzwari by saying “Good to see you” as the latter appeared before the chief justice after a long break. The chief justice added that: “He is being criticised for greeting Khan in the same manner; however, he uses this phrase often”. “I hold everyone in high esteem as respect and courteousness are important for everybody,” CJP Bandial remarked, adding, “Without these two aspects, there is no fun”. The Chief Justice observed that everyone deserves respect and good manners but he was criticized for greeting the former prime minister. “My remarks to Imran Khan carried no political implication”, the Chief Justice clarified. It is pertinent to mention here that the Pakistan Democratic Movement coalition partners the other day staged a sit-in outside the Supreme Court demanding resignation from the chief justice while protesting over his alleged partisan treatment of Imran Khan
Separately, during the hearing of the NAB amendment’s case on Tuesday, Makhdom Ali Khan arguing before the court through a video link from Karachi Registry submitted that due to the prevailing situation, he could not reach Islamabad for appearing before the court in the instant case, adding that news was also running on social media as well. At this Chief Justice, said news about “good to see you” Khan Sahib was also running on social media. Good to see you as well”, Chief Justice told Makhdom Ali Khan adding that what is being said in the court, is misinterpreted on social media. A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Umer Ata Bandial and comprising Justice Ijazul Ahsen and Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah was hearing the petition filed by PTI Chairman Imran Khan, challenging the amendments made by the ruling coalition government in National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999. The court adjourned the hearing for date-in-office (Indefinite period).
The court directed Makhdom Ali Khan, counsel for the federal government and Khwaja Haris, counsel for Pakistan Tehreeke-e-Insaaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan to submit summaries of their arguments. Chief Justice Umer Ata Bandial said after, both the counsels submit their respective summaries, it would be decided as to whether there was further need to continue the proceedings or not. The Chief Justice noted that so far 46 hearings have been conducted in the instant case during which Khwaja Haris, counsel for the petitioner gave arguments in 26 hearings while Makhdom Ali Khan gave arguments in 19 hearings. We don’t want to further linger on the instant case as maybe the bench will not be available during the summer vacations”, the Chief Justice said adding that there are some good things in the amendments made to the NAB law but there are some flaws too on which the court will give its decision.
Earlier, during the course of the hearing, Makhdom Ali Khan, counsel for the federal government while continuing his arguments submitted that the petitioner (Imran Khan) was seeking relief from Supreme Court and high courts under the same amendments made in NAB law which had also challenged in the apex court. Whether the petitioner could seek relief under the amended NAB law which he had already challenged in the Supreme Court”, the counsel questioned. He contended that for the first time in the constitutional history of Pakistan it was witnessed that a prime minister who had amended the NAB law and after the removal of his government, he challenged it in the Supreme Court. The question also arises as to whether he will also challenge the amendments made the other day by a joint sitting of Parliament in NAB law”, Makhdom Ali Khan contended. Chief Justice Umer Ata Bandial however, observed that these amendments could be challenged later on before the relevant forum The Chief Justice observed that through different judgments, the apex court too had directed amendments to NAB law. “For assistance, we had asked the Parliament to make amendments to make the NAB law more strong”, the Chief Justice remarked. Shortly after the CJP’s remarks made the news, PML-N leader Maryam posed a number of questions for the chief justice on Twitter. “How many criminals who have stolen billions do you greet with ‘good to see you’? Do you bid farewell to everyone by calling the registrar to send a Mercedes for them? Do you shift everyone from jail to a rest house? Do you shower everyone on remand with bail? Do you tell everyone to call ten family members, chat with them and go to sleep?”
In another tweet, Maryam Nawaz said that for the first time in history, a revolutionary party has surfaced “that plastered its leg” out of fear. She said what she saw, heard and read was that political leaders and workers were not afraid and they bravely present arrests for their ideology. Maryam Nawaz said that the revolutionary party has created a new history of keeping buckets on the head and sitting in a wheelchair. She added that political leaders bravely face imprisonment, do not hesitate to make big sacrifices and bear irreparable losses. She further said that the revolutionary party has created a new history of hiding in hospitals, courtrooms and bathrooms and running after leaving shoes.