Justice Khosa recuses himself from Hudaibiya Paper Mills reopening hearing
Justice Khosa recuses himself from Hudaibiya Paper Mills reopening hearing
Justice Asif Khosa of SC rescues himself from Hudaibiya Paper Mills reference
14 November, 2017, 11:01
The anti-graft body had submitted that in view of the fact that the JIT which was constituted by the apex court while dealing with the petitions, for probing Panama matter, when collected further incriminating material regarding Hudaibiya Paper Mills, it (NAB) can not be debarred or restrained from proceeding further with the investigation, hence it would be appropriate to set aside the impugned judgment to the extent of re-investigation in order to fortify and corroborate the material collected by the JIT.
According to a senior official of NAB and legal experts, reopening of Hudaibiya Paper Mills case would create more troubles for the Sharif family and Ishaq Dar, who are already in troubled waters facing graft references in the accountability court, particularly Shehbaz Sharif, who was being named as PML-N's next candidate for the office of prime minister.
The judge added that he had ordered to reopen the case in his verdict and written around 14 paragraphs pertaining to Hudaibiya mills case.
Last week, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar formed a three-member bench, headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, comprising Justice Dost Mohammad and Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhail to hear NAB's plea to reopen the case against members of Sharif family.
He said now when the previous verdict in the case given by the Lahore High Court (LHC) had turned impugned and the case was going to be declared as void, Dar's status as "approver" would also end and he would be treated as an accused. However the lawyers of the Sharif family did not file the application following Justice Khosa's inability to head the bench.
Awami Muslim League (AML) Chief Sheikh Rasheed had submitted a petition in SC, stating that on July 21, amid hearing of the Panama Papers case, NAB had assured the court to submit reply in seven days on Hudaibiya case but it failed to do so within the mentioned time.
It was in relation to this case that the Sharif family's trusted aide, Ishaq Dar, recorded a confessional statement on April 25, 2000 in front of a magistrate in Lahore accepting his role in laundering money.
Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, his son Hamza Shehbaz and others had been made respondents in the case. It argued in the appeal that the referee judge was not "competent" to set aside the findings of the high court, in which the NAB had been allowed to reinitiate investigations against the Sharif family.
The legal fraternity hailed both these decisions of the apex court judge.
Dar later retracted his statement and claimed that the statement was gleaned under duress. The hearing in the case has been adjourned indefinitely.
The Sharif family had earlier made a decision to challenge the bench of the Apex court formed for hearing the NAB appeal seeking reopening of the Hudaibiya papers mills reference.
In its appeal, the bureau had asked the apex court to set aside the 2014 judgement "in the interest of justice, fair play and equity".
The bench was scheduled to conduct proceeding today.
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