NRO implementation: SC gives PM Ashraf time till Sep 18
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf has appeared before the Supreme Court today in the contempt of court case regarding the implementation of National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) as decided by the coalition partners Sunday, Geo News reported.
A five-judge special bench comprising Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan, Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Muhammad Ather Saeed is hearing the case.
10:40 am: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf leaves the court premises.
10:36 am: SC orders PM Ashraf to appear in the court on September 18 and adjourns hearing.
10:30 am: The bench started to dictate the interim order.
10:27 am: SC gives time till September 12 while PM Ashraf requests for time till September 16 as he has some professional commitments. He said that he will be in China till September 14, therefore, more time should be granted.
10:15 am: PM Ashraf told the bench that he is going to China and pleaded the bench again to give him more time and withdraw the show cause notice. He said that if he will visit China with a show cause notice, it will give a negative impact to the international community.
10:17 am: The court sought commitment from the prime minister and asked him to nominate a person to write the letter to Swiss authorities. Justice Khosa warned of more complications incase the PM does not commit nomination.
10:00 am: PM Ashraf pleads the bench to withdraw the show cause notice issued to him.
09: 48 am: Justice Khosa said the issue is not as complex as the government is making it seem.
09:45 am: Justice Asif Saeed Khosa addressed the PM Ashraf and said that latter has not appeared as an accused, adding that he is the respectable prime minister of the respectable nation.
09:40 am: PM Ashraf has sought 4-6 weeks time from the SC in the case. He also said that he wants to consult constitutional experts regarding the show cause notice issued to him.
09:35 am: SC starts hearing the case while PM Ashraf stands in the rostrum. He said that he has appeared before the bench in the same way as ex-PM Gilani appeared.
09:15am: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf appears before the SC. While talking to the media, he said that he respects the judiciary and that he came to the court out of respect.
09:14am: Interior Minister Rehman Malik reached the SC
08:53 am: PPP leader Qamar Zaman Kaira reached the court and while talking to the media, he said that the party had not accepted the earlier sacking of Gilani and thought it was unconstitutional.
08:49 am: PML-Q League and deputy Prime Minister Pervez Elahi reached the SC and said that the coalition partners decided that the prime minister should appear in the SC today.
08:20 am: PPP leader Makhdom Amin Fahim reached the Supreme Court and while speaking to the media outside the building, he said that his party respects the judiciary. He predicted that the prime minister will not be punished this time according to the Constitution.
Leaders of the Pakistan People’s Party-led government’s coalition partners accompanied the Prime Minister as he presented himself before the apex court.
The decision was made at the high-level meeting of the government’s allies at Aiwan-e-Sadr on Sunday.
President Zardari and Prime Minister Raja presided over the meeting, which was attended by former prime minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, Deputy Prime Minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, ANP chief Asfandyar Wali Khan, Raja Basharat Ahmad, Dr Farooq Sattar, Babar Ghauri, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Afrasiab Khattak, Syed Khursheed Ahmad Shah, Senator Rehman Malik, Farooq H Naek, Munir Aurakzai, Hameedullah Jan Afridi, Senator Rashid Ahmad, Senator Kulsoom Parveen, Khuda Bux Rajar and Farhatullah Babar.
According to sources, the coalition partners during the meeting put forth advice that a clash between state institutions should be avoided at all cost.
Earlier, the Prime Minister held a meeting with President Zardari to decide the strategy in connection with the former’s appearance before the apex court on Monday.
The Supreme Court on August 8 issued a contempt notice to Prime Minister Ashraf for not implementing its order of writing a letter to the Swiss authorities to reopen a money-laundering case against President Zardari.
PM Ashraf had been asked to appear in person before a five-judge bench headed by Justice Asif Khosa on August 27 to respond to the notice.