ISLAMABAD: After months of litigation, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader Senator Rehman Malik and US blogger Cynthia Dawn Ritchie finally withdrew their petitions against each other, apparently after reaching an ‘out-of-court settlement’ of their dispute.
Started from the sessions court, Mr Malik and Ms Cynthia’s legal fight had reached the Supreme Court.
In October last year, the Supreme Court had dismissed Mr Malik’s appeal and upheld Sept 1 directive of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) about remanding back for a review to Justice of Peace the matter involving registration of a First Information Report (FIR) against the petitioner over allegations of rape levelled by the US blogger.
The IHC was hearing a case related to deportation of Ms Cynthia as well. On Thursday, the counsel for Mr Malik and Ms Cynthia filed applications seeking withdrawal of all pending petitions filed by their clients.
US blogger had hurled serious allegations at PPP senator
Earlier, Additional District and Sessions Judge Nasir Javed Rana, in his capacity as Justice of Peace, had dismissed the petition filed by Ms Ritchie under Sections 22-A and 22-B of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898, seeking a directive for police to register a criminal case against Rehman Malik.
But the IHC had on Sept 1 ordered that the matter concerning the registration of the FIR over rape allegations be referred back to the Justice of Peace for a review.
In his petition filed in the Supreme Court, Mr Malik had argued that it was a question of fundamental public importance that required the authoritative pronouncement by the Supreme Court as the high court’s order would gravely affect the life, dignity, honour and respect of the petitioner and other high-profile dignitaries of the state, and the sanctified fundamental rights granted under Articles 4, 9, 10A, 14 and 25 of the Constitution.
The petition had alleged that the high court failed to appreciate that there was no supporting evidence with the complaint like medico-legal report, chemical examiner’s report or DNA report, adding that the Justice of Peace was within his right to dismiss the application by declaring it false.
Published in Dawn, January 15th, 2021