IT is quite understandable that the prime minister and his party are celebrating the Panama papers case judgement because Nawaz Sharif has had a narrow escape.
Two senior most judges, including Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, who headed the bench, have categorically stated the prime minister should be disqualified because he lied in parliament and he is not Sadiq and Ameen.
The other three judges want the matter investigated by a JIT. In other words the PM has not been given a clean chit.
It would have been a good judgment if the prime minister was asked to step down pending the JIT inquiry, because JIT members work under the prime minister.
Had this case been in another country, the prime minister would have been asked to leave office or he would have left on his own on moral grounds.
We cannot expect the JIT to be fair as long as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is in office. Our past experience of JITs has not been good.
Pity the nation whose leaders are compared with Italian mafia godfathers.
The Supreme Court verdict has opened Pandora’s box. It seems that the maximum punishment the judges considered was the prime minister’s disqualification.
Despite the burden of proof being on him, the prime minister failed to prove the London flats were purchased through money legally earned and transferred.
His contradictory statements on the subject prove he is not being Sadiq and Ameen, which is an essential requirement for any member of parliament.
While two judges were convinced that the prime minister needed to leave, the other three disagreed.
Owing to the insistence of the three judges, it has now been decided by the bench to have the prime minister investigated by a JIT.
Of course, the Supreme Court will monitor the JIT but if many of its members also remained ‘unconvinced’ of the guilt, how could the bench challenge them when three of its own judges had reached the same conclusion?
I STRONGLY advise the prime minister not to forget the past. The worst thing he can do is to maintain his precarious grip on power until the masses compel him to resign, which can happen without warning, as we have seen in the case of Ayub and Bhutto.
The best he can do, of course, is to resign and run his party without being in government. But will he take this path? I doubt it.
Published in Dawn, April 29th, 2017