ISLAMABAD, Aug 28 (APP): The Supreme Court on Wednesday discharged the contempt notice against PTI Chairman for his alleged derogatory remarks regarding judiciary in press statements.
The contempt case was heard by the three-member bench comprising Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali, Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Ejaz Ahmed Chaudhry. Hamid Khan, counsel for Imran Khan, read out a 21-page written reply submitted on behalf of his client before the bench.
Justice Khilji Arif Hussain questioned that what the word “shameful” used by the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman for judiciary could be interpreted by a layman. Hamid Khan explained that his client had never ever used this word for any judge or the judiciary and he even could not think of using it in future.
Justice Khilji Arif Hussain remarked that PTI team, which was always very active on social media network, had been very critical about the judiciary.
He said that the judiciary wanted to see political figures as a role model for the nation. If the politicians acted in such a manner then anyone would use any kind of language against the judiciary. Justice Ejaz Ahmed Chaudhry suggested that if Imran Khan submitted a rebuttal the case could be dismissed immediately.
He remarked that the words were used for an institution and not against an individual, thus action could be taken against him. Hamid Khan apprised the court that famous English judge Lord Denning had said that the freedom of speech has priority over the respect of judiciary.
Quoting Denning, he said the contempt of court law was not appropriate and should be abolished or amended.
Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali remarked that Imran Khan did not express excuse over his statement.
Justice Ejaz Ahmed Chaudhry remarked that the PTI Chairman always talked about the implementation of the apex court’s orders.
Hamid Khan said that PTI accepted the Supreme Court’s verdict regarding the presidential election.
He further stated that the Supreme Court also did not take action against the statements by other political parties against the apex court’s decision about the re-scheduling of presidential election.
Imran Khan’s statement should also be ignored like those of other political leaders, Hamid Khan pleaded.
Attorney General for Pakistan Munir A Malik also appeared before the court and stated that if anyone including politicians passed derogatory remarks or criticized the judiciary, the dignity of the apex court and the judiciary remained intact.
Malik also stated that public at large did not believe in making statements against the judiciary and such statements did not affect the credibility of judiciary.
He questioned that some people were issued contempt notices for their derogatory remarks while the others were not. He did not press the court for initiating contempt of court proceedings against Imran Khan.
The PTI Chairman Khan appeared before the court and stated that he had pointed towards the role of returning officers (ROs) and not passed any remarks against the higher judiciary.
Imran stated that PTI had issued a 2,500-page white paper regarding polls rigging. Later, the bench discharged the frame against the PTI Chairman and disposed of the case. It may be mentioned that the contempt notice was served by the Registrar Office to Imran, upon which he had appeared before the apex court on August 2 but the case was adjourned and he was asked to submit a reply.