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Pak house to debate top judge's suspension

world Updated: Apr 27, 2007 14:57 IST
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Pakistan's National Assembly will debate the suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry, even though the issue is before the Supreme Court and considered sub-judice.

A resolution moved on Wednesday by Law Minister Wasi Zafar condemning the opposition's "attitude" over Chaudhry's suspension "is set to backfire" as 22 top guns from the opposition benches have enlisted for a debate on the resolution, The Daily Times said on Friday.

Parliament decided to take up the issue even as the chief justice filed an application in the Supreme Court seeking early hearing of his constitutional petition by a full bench on a day-to-day basis from April 30.

The application states that the petitioner had raised several constitutional questions in his petition concerning judicial independence, access to justice and the very existence of the Supreme Court so its early hearing was necessary.

The planned debate in the National Assembly is an apparent victory for the opposition that has been pressing for a debate on the issue since the session began last Monday.

Speaker Amir Hussain and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Sher Afgan Niazi had said this was not allowed under assembly rules because the matter is sub-judice.