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SC asks spies to stay away from courts

world Updated: Jul 03, 2007 02:12 IST

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Pakistan's Supreme Court on Monday stripped a government lawyer of his license for filing an objectionable document containing abusive references against judges and ordered the intelligence agencies to keep its personnel away from the apex court and residence of judges.

In an unprecedented directive, the full bench of the Supreme Court hearing the petition of suspended chief justice Iftikhar M Chaudhry on Monday banned the movement of personnel of intelligence agencies in around the apex court and high courts as well as the residence of judges.

The 13-member bench, which appeared infuriated over certain un-attributed comments against judges describing them as "pimps" in the documents filed by the government counsel in support of the reference of allegations against Chaudhry, stripped Chaudhry Akhtar Ali of his license.

The judges also ordered notices to be issued to the Law Secretary saying the court will proceed against the senior official for producing un-attributed documents, which were designed to malign the judiciary.

The bench ordered the Director-General of Intelligence Bureau (IB) to carry out a survey whether the residences and phones of judges were being bugged and tapped and file a report within a week.

If any bugging or tapping is taking place it should be stopped immediately, the bench said.

In a day of dramatic developments at the apex court, when the suspended top judge's defence lawyer Atezaz Ahesan pointed to an un-attributed document containing objectionable remarks against the judges, the court wanted the lawyer who prepared the documents to be produced before the bench.