- Interior Minister says CJP should take suo motu and order forensic of the audio
Interior Minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Rana Sanaullah demanded on Sunday a forensic audit of an alleged leaked phone call involving the mother-in-law of Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial, and said that the judges mentioned in the audio should step down, Aaj News reported.
Addressing a press conference in Faisalabad, Sanaullah said the CJP should take suo motu notice of the audio leak and order a forensic of the phone call.
"Those involved in the leaked audio must be questioned, and the judges who are being referred to in the audio [the chief justice] should show some grace and step down."
Rana Sanaullah said the purported audio leak is a "matter of concern" for the general public and politicians alike and it must be thoroughly investigated.
The interior minister's presser comes after an alleged phone call between CJP Bandial's mother-in-law and the PTI counsel's wife was leaked online.
In the purported audio, the two women can be heard discussing early elections, their support for the chief justice, and their resentment towards the incumbent government.
The two women also talk about their concern for the chief justice amid the ongoing election delay case which is being heard by a three-member bench at the Supreme Court of Pakistan.
They also vaguely discuss being in a Lahore rally where there were hundreds of thousands of people.
The bench — headed by CJP Bandial and comprising Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan and Justice Munib Akhtar as members — in its April 4 order, directed the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold the polls in Punjab on May 14.
Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) Ata Tarar shared the audio clip on his Twitter account, saying that he is sure about the deep conspiracy after hearing the audio clip.
"The Constitution and law have been trampled for the sake of families. The families of Chief Sahib and two colleagues are trying to bring Imran Niazi to power by holding early elections along with attending [political] rallies," Tarar tweeted.
He then went to ask if Article 63 A's interpretation was now understood.
Reacting to the alleged audio leak, Senior Vice-President PTI Fawad Chaudhry said his party had repeatedly asked the apex court to "look into the disastrous series of audio leaks" after phone calls of the PM Office and PM House were released in the past.
"The Prime Minister's Office is so insecure that the meeting is being recorded, so who else will be safe?" he wrote on the micro-blogging site.
He added that even after the passage of several months, the application has not been filed in the Supreme Court.
"Now, judges, politicians, civil servants and even housewives are victims of this third class thinking and no one can do anything," he tweeted.
Fawad, in his tweet, mentioned that "such illegal phone tapping is punishable by up to three years in prison under the fair trial law."