Govt stance on Swiss letter unchanged

Published Jul 24, 2012 09:05pm

Supreme_Court_AFP_7_670
Supreme Court of Pakistan — AFP Photo

ISLAMABAD: A day ahead of the hearing of NRO implementation case by a five-judge Supreme Court bench, the federal government filed on Tuesday an application in which it unequivocally stated that it would not write a letter to the Swiss authorities to reopen graft cases against President Asif Zardari.

But the response drafted by Attorney General Irfan Qadir after holding brainstorming sessions with Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf and Law Minister Farooq H. Naek on Monday night was returned by the court office with an objection that a civil miscellaneous application could not be filed against a court decision, although a petition seeking review of an earlier order was possible.

Mr Qadir told reporters that he would move a review petition possibly Wednesday with contentions similar to that contained in the application, reflecting the government’s mood that it was not going to budge from its stance on NRO implementation.

“The prime minister cannot be asked by means of the July 12 order to implement an un-implementable direction given by the Supreme Court in the NRO case,” said the application returned by the court. It requested the court to recall its June 27 and July 12 orders asking the prime minister to clarify his stance on implementing the NRO verdict.

On July 12, the special bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa had asked the prime minister to submit a report about compliance with the NRO judgment which required writing the letter to Swiss authorities. The court also warned that it could initiate any appropriate action under the Constitution if the government failed to comply with its orders.

“There is no question whatsoever of revival of Pakistan’s status as a damaged party (writing of letter to the Swiss authorities) because the Supreme Court’s own jurisdiction is limited to the territories of Pakistan,” the application said, adding that if the apex court itself was not in a position to seek revival of Pakistan’s status as a damaged party then it also had no mandate to force the prime minister to do the same. “In fact after the conclusion of Swiss investigations Pakistan has no role to play in these matters. There was no occasion for the seven-judge Supreme Court hearing a contempt case against the former prime minister to have called him thrice in the court. This is an utter disregard of the Constitution and the law,” the application said.

It also argued that since the new prime minister had not received any advice from his cabinet to implement the NRO judgment, he (prime minister) was, therefore, not obliged under the Constitution and the rules of business to do so.

The application said the June 27 and July 12 orders were against Article 248 (1 and 2) (immunity) because the prime minister by virtue of his oath was bound to preserve and protect the Constitution and was under constitutional obligation to disregard any order of the court which negated the Constitution and the law.

The application pointed out certain peculiarities of the NRO case and said: “In this case over 8,000 persons were condemned unheard. The government did not contest this case. Seventeen judges sat for a considerably long period in a case not contested by either side at all….. The Supreme Court assumed full control of NAB, thereby transgressing into executive domain.”

It said a number of portions of paragraphs 177, 178 and 179 (writing of letter to the Swiss authorities) were not implementable.

“In fact such portions have not been implemented till date,” it said.

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Comments (8) (Closed)


SAEED KHAN
Jul 25, 2012 03:20pm
WHAT A SHAME WHEN WILL THE MOST UNPOPULAR GOVERNMENT GO WE OVERSEAS PAKISTANIS PRAY IT NEVER ARRIVES
Tariq Aslam
Jul 30, 2012 05:54pm
I respect your thoughts. I am with you in praying for the country. People who are playing with the country Allah put them on the straight path.
naila
Jul 27, 2012 05:51am
ppp is playing with the future of pakistan they dont have interest with country affairs they are here to fill their pockets and also want that no one stand for that .They have considered the law as fun and implemented law of jungle where every thing is good for them and if anybody complained they did not take into account i pray for my country as well as for these polititions
Mukesh
Jul 25, 2012 03:24am
Mr. Zardari has claimed several times that he has no money in swiss accounts. Why is he then not prepared to write to the swiss authorities as per the court order. If Mr. Zardari is honest then any probe against him will not result in anything against him and this action will only increase his respect.
Dr Javaid Khan
Jul 25, 2012 04:17am
No one is asking the goverment to write a letter to reopen cases agains Mr President.What the Apex court has asked the goverment to write that previous letter written by former Attorney General Malik Qyaum was illegal.Let the SwissCourts decide about the future of these cases.On one hand govermen says that there is no money of Mr President in swiss accounts than why are they so resistant in writting this letter.There must be some fear in the mind of PPP goverment.
Maqboolfida
Jul 25, 2012 04:35am
Fun starts again!! The PPP govt is so busy trying to save itself, it has forgotten why they are in power in the first place!
Sohaib YAHIA
Jul 25, 2012 05:04am
It is high time that people are spared from this tug-of-war. Sanity must prevail, at least on one side. Let not poor people already deprived of life's basic necessities suffer more in this battle of ego, from which neither of the two parties is going to come out as a winner. Six billions dollars or whatever they are can further rest in Swiss banks for few more months without impacting any more the beleaguered state of the affairs of the people.
Cyrus Howell
Jul 25, 2012 08:18am
Jimmy Meng, 68, a former state assemblyman, brazenly promised to bribe Manhattan prosecutors who were pursuing a tax- fraud case against a Meng associate, Brooklyn federal prosecutors said. Meng — who represented Flushing from 2005 to 2006 — solicited $80,000 in bribes from the associate while promising he could make the case disappear, officials said. We are crazy in America. We send our crooked politicians to jail. I have seen three Illinois governors go to prison in my lifetime.