Islamabad high court judge sacked by Pakistan president over remarks against ISI
The Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) had recommended removal of Islamabad High Court (IHC) Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui, who was facing a case of alleged misconduct over his controversial speech targeting the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).world Updated: Oct 12, 2018 21:06 IST
A top judge of the Islamabad high court has been sacked for accusing the Inter-Services Intelligence agency of manipulating judicial proceedings, including the case in which former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was convicted.
President Arif Alvi removed Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui as a judge of the high court on Thursday on the recommendation of the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC).
The council unanimously agreed that while delivering his speech at the District Bar Association in Rawalpindi on July 21, Siddiqui displayed conduct unbecoming of a high court judge. In its 37-page report, it recommended the judge’s removal.
The report, authored by the Supreme Court’s senior-most judge, Asif Saeed Khosa, said Siddiqui violated several key clauses of the Judges’ Code of Conduct, in addition to violating other norms and traditions.
Khosa said Siddiqui chose to address a meeting of the bar association at a time when many inquiries were pending against him before the SJC.
In his speech, Siddiqui had accused the ISI of manipulating judicial proceedings, especially in the Panama Papers leaks case. The SJC had served a notice to him, asking him to explain his allegations. Siddiqui submitted two replies, raising a legal objection to the SJC inquiry in the first and responding on factual issues in the second.
Siddiqui narrated two meetings with a “senior official” at his residence in June and July to establish his claim about the manipulation of proceedings.
Islamabad high court Chief Justice Anwar Kasi has denied Siddiqui’s allegations that some ISI official had approached a top judge and asked him not to let Sharif out of prison before the general election.
This is the first time since 1970 that the SJC recommended the removal of a high court judge.
Reacting to the SJC’s decision, Siddiqui said the council’s opinion was not unexpected. He said the SJC had taken up a “baseless reference” against him.
First Published: Oct 12, 2018 10:55 IST