ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Wednesday summoned the text of the prime minister's August 29 speech in Parliament, saying any words uttered in the House comprised public property and should be available to the people.
A three judge bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja, has been hearing identical petitions — filed by former MNA and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Ishaq Khan Khakwani, Pakistan Muslim League (PML-Q) President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain and Gohar Sindhu Advocate — calling for the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif from holding a seat in the National Assembly.
The petitioners have requested the court to disqualify Nawaz under Article 62 (f) of the Constitution, claiming he gave a false statement during a joint sitting of the Parliament over the role of the army in negotiations with PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) to end their sit-ins.
Khakwani and Shujaat had said that the prime minister told the House on Aug 29 that he had asked Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif to act as a mediator and guarantor between the government and PTI Chairman Imran Khan and PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri for ending the impasse.
During today's hearing, Sindhu said the prime minister continued to stand by his statement, adding that not only the premier, but also the interior minister had issued false statements on the matter. He further said that the government had approached the army chief to act as a negotiator and a guarantor in order to deal with the sit-ins led by PTI and PAT.
Responding to Justice Khawaja's question as to whether the petitioners could not obtain a record of the prime minister's speech from the day in question, Sindhu said he had filed a request for the text but so far it had not been granted.
Justice Khawaja said text of the prime minister's speech on the floor of the House was public property. He however said that the Supreme Court's research staff had also not been able to obtain the text when it approached governmental channels.
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