Speaker’s ruling case: SC asks for minutes of NSC huddle, adjourns hearing till tomorrow

08:00 PM | 6 Apr, 2022
Speaker’s ruling case: SC asks for minutes of NSC huddle, adjourns hearing till tomorrow
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ISLAMABAD – Pakistan’s Supreme Court has adjourned the hearing of the case against the ruling of the National Assembly speaker till Thursday.

A five-member bench of the top court led by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Umer Atta Bandial conducted the hearing of the case.

During the hearing, CJP Bandial remarked that the court wanted to know about the ‘foreign conspiracy’ against Prime Minister Imran Khan before issuing the decision.

The conspiracy needs to be reviewed by the court that was used to dismiss the motion against the premier, the judge said, ruling that the bench would also look into whether the speaker had the authority to deviate from the agenda of the house.

The top judge asked when did the NSC meeting take place, and added that the court wanted to focus on facts in the case as the ruling was an action by the Speaker.

The court then asked PTI counsel Babar Awan if a constitutional process could be sidelined. Awan then mentioned that PM Khan was told in a briefing that a foreign country was unhappy with him but if the no-confidence motion against him succeeded then everything would be fine.

CJP Bandial then mentioned that the ruling was based on allegations, not findings, and asked if the speaker could issue a ruling without revealing the facts. He added that the court needs to decide on the constitutionality of this particular action.

Justice Bandial also asked about the authority of the speaker. Can NA speaker go beyond Article 95 to give a ruling that’s not part of the agenda, he asked.

The judge also remarked that constitutional orders are of paramount importance to the rules of the National Assembly, saying the constitutional right cannot be disregarded based on NA rules.

The larger bench observed that it wants the lawyers to complete their arguments today so that the proceedings aren't prolonged.

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NA Speaker's counsel Naeem Bukhari and the attorney general of Pakistan requested the court to adjourn the case till tomorrow. Later, the bench adjourned the hearing until 9:30 am Thursday.

The development comes days after NA Deputy Speaker Qasim Khan Suri prorogued the NA session after rejecting the united opposition's no-confidence motion against PM Imran Khan, calling it in contrast to Article 5 of the Constitution.