Pakistan

SC forms five-member larger bench to hear Panamagate petitions

supreme-court

ISLAMABAD: The Chief Justice of Pakistan Anwar Zaheer Jamali formed a larger bench on Friday in a bid to hear petitions in the Panama Papers leaks case on November 1, seeking disqualification of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

A five-member larger SC bench headed by CJP included Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, Justice Amir Hani Muslim, Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan and Justice Azmat Saeed.

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), Jamaat-i-Islami (JI), All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed and Barrister Zafarullah Khan of Watan Party had filed petitions in the case.

The apex court on October 21 had announced to begin the hearing on the Panamagate petitions filed against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, his family members.

The infamous Panamagate Scandal emerged earlier this year when names of several Pakistanis including Nawaz Sharif’s children Maryam, Hussain, and Hasan surfaced in one of the world’s biggest ever data leaks through an online searchable database made public by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) in April 2016, following which the prime minister had formed an inquiry commission to probe his family’s alleged links to offshore accounts.

Unfortunately, the federal government and the opposition could not agree on drafting joint terms of references (ToRs), which would probe Panama Papers Leaks.

The PTI later announced a sit-in in Islamabad on November 2 after state institutions including National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), as per Khan, failed to probe the case.

Imran Khan has warned Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) of grave consequences if the government tried to stop PTI’s peaceful protest while the government believes that when the case against the premier was already in the court, PTI must not create an uncertain situation for the country.

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