LAHORE: The provincial law and parliamentary affairs department on Tuesday sent a summary to the chief minister for the removal of Advocate General for Punjab Ahmad Awais, while the incumbent claimed that he would continue to work till a decision by the governor.

The summary forwarded by Law Secretary Ahmad Raza Sarwar to Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz said: “The government has desired to remove Mr Ahmad Awais, Advocate General of Punjab with immediate effect.”

It said the chief minister may advise the governor in terms of Article 140, read with Article 105 of the Constitution, read with item 4 of Part A of the Third Schedule of Punjab Government Rules of Business 2011, to remove and appoint the advocate general.

The summary also requested the chief minister to advise the governor to assign the duties to look after the work of the AGP to Additional Advocate General Akhtar Javed till the appointment of a regular principal law officer.

Ahmad Awais says he will continue to work till decision by governor

In response to the government’s summary, AGP Awais hurriedly held a press conference in his office and told the media persons that the chief minister had power to remove him. He claimed the law officer could not be terminated without the approval of the governor.

Mr Awais alleged that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was a fascist and had been violating the Constitution. He urged Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial to take a suo motu notice of the situation in the province.

Mr Awais was appointed as advocate general for a second time on July 29, 2020.

Previously, he had resigned after contempt proceedings were initiated against him by a full bench of the Lahore High Court in 2019.

He was served with a contempt notice for creating a scene in the courtroom and trying to pressurise the bench at the time of announcement of a verdict against second JIT on Model Town incident.

Mr Awais preferred resignation over an apology and accused the members of the bench of committing misconduct. The three-judge bench had discharged the contempt proceedings showing judicial restraint.

Published in Dawn, May 11th, 2022

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