AIRLINK 57.90 Increased By ▲ 2.86 (5.2%)
BOP 6.24 Decreased By ▼ -0.05 (-0.79%)
CNERGY 4.02 Increased By ▲ 0.07 (1.77%)
DFML 15.73 Increased By ▲ 0.09 (0.58%)
DGKC 68.49 Increased By ▲ 2.49 (3.77%)
FCCL 17.72 Increased By ▲ 0.70 (4.11%)
FFBL 25.69 Increased By ▲ 1.24 (5.07%)
FFL 9.26 Increased By ▲ 0.26 (2.89%)
GGL 9.74 Increased By ▲ 0.30 (3.18%)
HBL 111.74 Increased By ▲ 1.74 (1.58%)
HUBC 114.81 Increased By ▲ 1.46 (1.29%)
HUMNL 6.45 Increased By ▲ 0.10 (1.57%)
KEL 4.30 Increased By ▲ 0.02 (0.47%)
KOSM 3.55 Increased By ▲ 0.43 (13.78%)
MLCF 37.42 Increased By ▲ 1.02 (2.8%)
OGDC 117.20 Increased By ▲ 3.71 (3.27%)
PAEL 22.99 Increased By ▲ 0.99 (4.5%)
PIAA 11.31 Increased By ▲ 0.12 (1.07%)
PIBTL 5.71 Increased By ▲ 0.21 (3.82%)
PPL 105.32 Increased By ▲ 2.63 (2.56%)
PRL 26.45 Increased By ▲ 1.31 (5.21%)
PTC 9.49 Increased By ▲ 0.04 (0.42%)
SEARL 53.34 Increased By ▲ 3.72 (7.5%)
SNGP 64.79 Increased By ▲ 1.94 (3.09%)
SSGC 10.94 Increased By ▲ 0.18 (1.67%)
TELE 7.15 Increased By ▲ 0.18 (2.58%)
TPLP 11.79 Increased By ▲ 0.26 (2.25%)
TRG 72.25 Increased By ▲ 4.65 (6.88%)
UNITY 20.63 Increased By ▲ 0.13 (0.63%)
WTL 1.29 Increased By ▲ 0.07 (5.74%)
BR100 6,286 Increased By 123 (2%)
BR30 21,586 Increased By 604.2 (2.88%)
KSE100 61,559 Increased By 1094.9 (1.81%)
KSE30 20,718 Increased By 420.9 (2.07%)

ISLAMABAD: A nine-member bench of the Supreme Court on December 12 will take up a presidential reference, seeking a declaration by the court that the hanging of former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (ZAB) was a “judicial murder”.

The bench headed by Justice Qazi Faez Isa, and comprising Justice Sardar Tariq Masood, Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, Justice Yahya Afridi, Justice Aminuddin Khan, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar, Justice Syed Hasan Azhar Rizvi, and Justice Musarrat Hilali, will hear the reference.

The bench was constituted by an order of the apex court committee, set up under Section 2(1) of the Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Act, 2023.

SC may hear ‘Bhutto case’ next week

PPP government on April 02, 2011, had filed a reference in the apex court to reopen the case of former prime minister and founder of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who was hanged on April 4, 1979, in Rawalpindi.

This case was heard initially by a three-judge bench headed by former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on various dates. However, on 21.04.2011 the then CJP constituted an 11-member SC bench for the hearing of the reference. The last hearing of the reference was held on 11th November 2012.

Ali Ahmed Kurd, Tariq Mehmood, Abdul Hafeez Pirzada, Fakhruddin G Ebrahim, Khalid Anwar, Makhdoom Ali Khan, SM Zafar, Aitzaz Ahsan, Zahoorul Haq, and Abdul Latif Afridi were appointed as amicus curiae. However, Khalid Anwar expressed his inability to assist the court as amicus curiae and in his place Qazi Muhammad Ashraf was appointed as amicus curiae.

Former president Asif Ali Zardari had forwarded the reference to the Supreme Court under clause 1 and 2 of Article 186 of the Constitution for revisiting the case of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Babar Awan, who later joined Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, had argued the reference on behalf of the PPP government. However, on January 17, 2012, Awan’s law practice licence was suspended for criticising the court’s order in the Memo gate case.

Pakistan People Party has always termed the hanging of former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto as judicial murder. A five-member of the Lahore High Court had awarded death sentence to Bhutto, which was upheld by the Supreme Court.

Chairman of Pakistan People’s Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in October 2018 had filed an application to implead party in the presidential reference of ZAB, but it was not fixed in the last five years.

Ahmed Raza Kasuri, who had registered a murder case against Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, in pursuant of the court notice at that time had filed a 72-page reply. He contended that the court had no jurisdiction to reopen the ZAB case under Article 186 of the constitution; therefore, presidential reference should be dismissed.

He also mentioned that SC full court had already rejected the review petitions, unanimously regarding ZAB murder case; therefore, the case could not be reopened. Involving question of law and facts do not fall within the ambit of Article 186 of the Constitution.

Kasuri contended that if in this case the court gives its opinion that the judgment of the Supreme Court was a result of a bad trial, in that case the brother judges of this Court would be stigmatised in the eye of public at large. Therefore, “Would it not be a requirement of justice and fair play that notice should be given to them if they are alive or to their legal representatives if they are dead, to defend their dignity, honour, judgment, trial and their judicial conduct,” he said.

“That instant case falls within the purview of settled principle of Law, i.e., Closed and Past transaction. Since the administration of justice heavily leans in favour of “Finality”; hence, a litigation, which is closed and past, cannot be reopened, indirectly through article 186, of the constitution. Besides word “Revisit” is unknown both to Law and Constitution. One does not find any mention of the word, Revisit, in any legal dictionary”, Kasuri said in his statement.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023


Comments are closed.

Parvez Dec 08, 2023 12:56pm
.....and then what ?
thumb_up Recommended (0)
KU Dec 08, 2023 12:58pm
Judicial history revisited to prove the due process of law as flawed? Another unnecessary first is to become famous for all the wrong reasons. If the BR moderator permits, four other people were hanged along with the former PM and they were not approvers but admitted to the crime, surely they were not hanged as part of judicial murder. The people of Pakistan deserve truth and closure to this propaganda and an attempt to rewrite the history of choice. Besides, it is sensible to read the judgment, and can be had from the courts.
thumb_up Recommended (0)