It is not violation of the Constitution or law to include the personnel of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI) in a Judicial Commission to investigate vote rigging allegations. “Basically the job of Judicial Commission is to prepare investigation report and the decision in light of the report will be taken by the Election Commission of Pakistan. The judges of the Commission will take administrative and executive inputs from representatives of ISI and MI during the investigation,” former Justice Wajihuddin said while talking to Business Recorder on Monday.
He said the Judicial Commission would not be a decision-making body; it would prepare an investigative report and on-send it to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and it would be the prerogative of the ECP to take a decision on the report. Jutsice Wajihuddin, in response to a query, said that tribunal courts undertake judicial functions and give judgements. He said that under Article 225 of the Constitution, ECP has the authority to take decisions.
According to Article-225 of the Constitution, “Election dispute, No election to a House or a Provincial Assembly shall be called in question except by an election petition presented to such tribunal and in such manner as may be determined by Act of Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament).”
Answering another question, Wajihuddin said the constitution does not bar the inclusion of a representative of secret agencies in the Commission. However, he added that the inquiry commission could be constituted under the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1956 wherein the judges do not conduct the inquiry themselves but it is the officials of intelligence agencies (ISI and MI) that will carry out this job. Former Justice Tariq Mehmood said that as the terms of reference have not been settled for the Commission any discussion on the matter would be premature. However, he said, it is preferable to constitute a joint investigation team instead of a judicial commission if “we want to include the representatives of intelligence agencies in it”.
SOURCE: RECORDER REPORT