Nawaz's counsel appears as SC begins Article 62 case hearing


A five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, is hearing a number of petitions filed by members of the parliament, seeking to determine the time period of disqualification.

The Islamabad High Court has agreed to hear a contempt of court case against former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz.

The chief justice accepted the plea and directed Nawaz's counsel to come prepared next week.

At the outset of hearing, Sharif's counsel Azam Tarar appeared before the court on behalf of his client and submitted a plea to seek time to prepare the case.

The Supreme Court therefore issued a press release on Tuesday, which said: "It is notified for information of the general public that cases involving interpretation/determination of the question of temporary or permanent bar to contest elections after incurring of disqualification under any provision of the Constitution or the election laws have been fixed for hearing before five-judge bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan at Islamabad".

At Monday's hearing, the bench was informed that neither Nawaz nor any counsel representing him is present in court.

Minister of State for Interior Talal Chaudhry on Wednesday said that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is working on a "big agenda of institutional reforms", including judicial reforms. "If they are not stopped they will continue attacking the judiciary", the petitioner said, requesting the LHC to initiate contempt of court proceedings against the respondents.

Munir A Malik, who has been appointed as amicus curiae in the case said that right to contest in elections is a fundamental right.

The bench comprises Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed, Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah.

He stated that Article 62 (1)(f) does not give punishment which is mentioned in Article 63 of the Constitution.

On July 28, last year, the apex court disqualified Sharif from office on the grounds he did not disclose a salary from his son's Dubai-based company - the money Sharif says he never received.