ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday ordered Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to review the appointment of PML-N leader Hanif Abbasi as his special assistant, ARY News reported.
IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah issued the directive while hearing a plea filed by former interior minister Sheikh Rashid, who has challenged Abbasi’s appointment as a special assistant to the prime minister (SAPM).
In the petition, Rasheed pointed out that Hanif Abbasi had been appointed the SAPM through a notification dated April 27. “Both the notification and [the] appointment are illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional and violative of the principles of good governance and the rule of law,” he said.
The AML chief noted that a first information report dated July 21, 2012 was registered against Abbasi in Rawalpindi under Sections 9(c), 14 and 15 of the Control of Narcotic Substances Act, 1997.
He maintained that on April 11, 2019, the LHC only suspended Abbasi’s sentence and not the conviction.
The AML chief again highlighted these objections at today’s hearing, saying that a convict had been made an SAPM.
The court issued notices to the respondents and directed the PM to review his decision of appointing Abbasi as his SAPM.
The court then adjourned the hearing till May 17.
The PML-N leader was arrested just four days before the general elections in the country in 2018. A former MNA, Abbasi was to contest the 2018 general elections from NA-60 Rawalpindi.
The Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) registered a case against Abbasi and others in June 2012 under sections 9-C, 14 and 15 of the Control of Narcotics Substances (CNS) Act for misuse of 500kg of ephedrine.
On April 11, 2019, the Lahore High Court suspended life imprisonment sentence awarded to Hanif Abbasi in ephedrine quota case and ordered his release.
He was released from camp jail, Lahore on April 13, 2019.