Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain.—File Photo

ISLAMABAD:  Prominent lawyer and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Senator Aitzaz Ahsan on Saturday advised Altaf Hussain to appear in court after the Supreme Court issued a contempt notice to the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief over “his contemptuous assertions against the judiciary”.

However, whether the court’s order was right or wrong is another debate altogether, added Ahsan.

Speaking after the inauguration of an art exhibition in Lahore, the former Supreme Court Bar Association president said the judiciary should stay away from politics, and that the judges and politicians should both tend to their own responsibilities.

The apex court on Friday had summoned MQM chief Altaf Hussain to appear before it in person on Jan 7 and defend his statements against the judges.

“Prime facie, we are of the opinion that the language used is not only contemptuous but that he (Mr Hussain) advances threat which is tantamount to interference with and obstruction of the process of the court by advancing threats to the judges of the Supreme Court and it also tended to bring the Judges into hatred, ridicule and contempt,” said the court order dictated by the three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.

Responding to the notice, Hussain had said the party’s response in this regard would be in accordance with the law and the Constitution. Hussain said he would respond to the contempt notice after consulting his legal advisers, appealing to his party’s members and supporters to refrain from taking the law into their hands.

MQM is a key coalition member of the PPP-led government and is the largest political party in Karachi, Pakistan’s commercial capital.

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