Pak Supreme Court reserves judgment on Panamagate case
Counsels of both sides concluded their arguments before a three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan.world Updated: Jul 21, 2017 22:55 IST
Pakistan's Supreme Court on Friday reserved its judgement in the Panamagate case filed against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family over alleged corruption.
The judgement was reserved after counsel for both sides concluded their arguments before a three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan.
An official close to the Sharif family was arrested for tampering with the records of family companies of the premier. Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan chairman Zafar Hijazi was taken into custody on Friday.
Earlier in the day, the court opened the confidential volume of the Panamagate inquiry report submitted by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) tasked to probe Sharif family’s offshore wealth .
The top court bench had not made public "volume X" on the request of JIT head Wajid Zia, who was of the opinion that it would be helpful in carrying out further investigations.
The volume titled “Mutual Legal Assistance Requests ─ Ongoing” reportedly contains details of the six-member inquiry panel’s correspondence and documents obtained from foreign countries during the 60-day probe into the offshore assets of the ruling family in line with the top court’s historic April 20 verdict.
Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh observed that they will not deviate from any law while delivering a judgment in the case.
“We are conscious of the fundamental rights of petitioners and respondents,” he observed.
The bench further said they will announce the date for the final hearing later.
The court earlier hinted at making the volume public after lawyers of the Sharif family had objected to the JIT’s request for withholding it, terming it a mala fide act.
“[This] is itself a mala fide act and a breach of the Respondent No1’s [Sharif’s] fundamental rights guaranteed by Articles 4, 9, 14, 25 and 10A of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973,” said Sharif’s lawyer Khawaja Haris in objections filed on the JIT report.
The counsel had requested the court to provide a copy of volume X to the prime minister before proceeding further in the case.
Upon this, Justice Ejaz remarked that the court would open the said volume for transparency.
First Published: Jul 21, 2017 21:35 IST