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Supreme Court Takes Exception to Prime Minister’s Remarks

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During the hearing of the first-ever intra-court appeals against the majority judgment declaring amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) illegal, Supreme Court justices expressed disapproval of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s comments, labelling some judges as ‘black sheep.’ The judges found the prime minister’s remarks concerning and stated that the top executive official should address complaints through relevant forums.

The judges specifically referred to the prime minister’s address at a May 28 event, where he reportedly made remarks implying that some judges were not supporting Pakistan’s development and were aiding political figures such as Imran Khan. The prime minister drew parallels between the treatment of cases involving PML-N President Nawaz Sharif and those of PTI founder Imran Khan, expressing concerns about impartiality.

The larger bench, led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Qazi Faez Isa, along with other justices, took up two ICAs during the hearing. The justices expressed annoyance over the prime minister’s ‘black sheep’ remarks and clarified that such comments were not aimed at the current judges. They also suggested that the prime minister file a reference against any individuals he considered ‘black sheep’ within the judiciary.

The court allowed former Prime Minister Imran Khan to speak during the proceedings, where he raised concerns about human rights violations and requested access to legal counsel. The CJP assured Imran that he would be provided with the necessary materials and allowed to meet with lawyers, emphasizing the importance of legal expertise in the case.

The hearing was adjourned, with the chief justice stating that the date for the next hearing would be announced after reviewing the schedule.

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