ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan has declared the ruling of Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri unconstitutional and restored the National Assembly and Cabinet from April 3 while directing to convene a meeting for a no-confidence vote. Court ordered to go for the vote of confidence on Saturday.
A five-member larger bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Umar Ata Bandial issued a safe verdict in the self-notice case after a five-day hearing. The Supreme Court has given a brief verdict in the suo moto notice case while a detailed verdict will be issued later. National Assembly session to be held on April 9, 2022, Election Commission of Pakistan said in court that we are ready for elections but need 7 months for preparation.
Supreme Court of Pakistan decision
The larger bench quashed the ruling of the Deputy Speaker and revoked the recommendation of the Prime Minister to dissolve the National Assembly while declaring illegal the order of the President to dissolve the Assembly.
The Supreme Court also directed to convene a meeting of the National Assembly on April 9, 2022, and to continue the no-confidence motion. So Imran Khan will be able to continue his work as Prime Minister.
The summary judgment states that Article 63A will not be affected by the judgment of the court, the government can in no way prevent members from voting. The decision of the Supreme Court said that the Prime Minister was not qualified to dissolve the Assembly, therefore the House should be restored and the Speaker should reconvene on Saturday. If the no-confidence motion is successful, the election of a new Prime Minister should be held immediately.
According to the court decision, Imran Khan was restored as the Prime Minister while his cabinet members were also reinstated, as well as his aides and advisers.
In the wake of the verdict, the internal and external security of the Supreme Court was tightened and no unauthorized persons were allowed to enter the courtroom except certain persons.
Last day of hearing of self notice case
A five-member larger bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Omar Ata Bandial had reserved its judgment after hearing Speaker Rowling’s suo moto notice case, during which the government and opposition lawyers completed their arguments. The larger bench consisted of Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan, Justice Mazhar Alam Mian Khel, Justice Muneeb Akhtar, and Justice Jamal Khan Mando Khel.
Before saving the verdict, the Chief Justice remarked that everyone is respected in politics but God forbid the nation longs for leadership. One thing is clear and that is that Speaker’s ruling is wrong. What will happen next, even if the assembly is restored, there will be no stability in the country but the country needs stability while the opposition also says stability, we also have to look after the national interest.
Attorney General Khalid Javed also said that I am not defending the ruling but my respondent is a new election. Justice Jamal Mandokhel remarked that the court does not have to decide on the basis of circumstances and results, the court has to decide on the basis of the constitution. Who is not and we will not go to the results.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s appearance in court
Bilawal Bhutto also appeared in the court and said that forming a government for himself is not a priority.
The Chief Justice asked whether the electoral reform proposal was tabled. Has there been a bill for electoral reform? We know your family has made sacrifices for democracy. Call for electoral reforms in your Senate.
The Chief Justice said, “Bilawal Bhutto, thank you for your strong words and you are the only one who had a smile on your face. Let us strictly abide by the constitution and issue a decision. The decision will be in accordance with the constitution and law.” It is known that three generations of Bilawal Bhutto have sacrificed for the survival of democracy.
Opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif appears in court
Opposition leader in the Supreme Court Shahbaz Sharif said that the no-confidence motion would be revived after the end of the ruling and if the ruling of the speaker was canceled then the dissolution of the assembly would end automatically. The Chief Justice remarked that we need a strong government, not a weak one.
Shahbaz Sharif said that if the court declares the Speaker’s ruling unconstitutional then the steps taken by the Prime Minister will be terminated and as a result, the dissolved assembly will be restored. Will also be Let the court restore the parliament in the name of Allah and Pakistan, and let the parliament vote on no-confidence.
The Leader of the Opposition said that the government was based on 174 votes and we have 177 members. The Chief Justice asked how many seats did you have in the 2013 elections? Shahbaz Sharif said that there were more than 150 seats in the last elections.
Justice Jamal Mandokhel remarked that the opposition wanted to hold elections from day one. Shahbaz Sharif said that the issue was to break the constitution. Justice Jamal Mandokhel remarked that we will amend the constitution.
Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan asked that if the no-confidence motion is successful then how long will the assembly last? Shahbaz Sharif said that there is still a year and a half left in the parliament and he will work with his opposition for electoral reforms so that transparent elections can take place.
Arguments of Naeem Bukhari
Prior to the Attorney General’s arguments, the Speaker and Deputy Speaker’s counsel Naeem Bukhari had presented the minutes of the meeting of the Parliamentary National Security Committee in the Supreme Court in which it was revealed that the Foreign Minister and National Security Advisor were not present in the meeting.
After the meeting was adjourned, the court inquired whether the Foreign Minister was also present at the meeting. Naeem Bukhari replied that the notice was sent. The court then inquired whether the notice was gone. Our question is whether he was present at the national security meeting or not. Naeem Bukhari said that it seems that they were not present in this meeting. The court remarked that the name of National Security Advisor Moeed Yousaf was also missing.
Justice Jamal Mandokhel remarked that Foreign Minister was present in the parliamentary committee meeting. The signatures of the Foreign Minister are not visible in the minutes of the meeting. Shouldn’t the Foreign Minister have been in the meeting? Naeem Bukhari said that the foreign minister should have been in the parliamentary committee meeting. The Chief Justice said that the name of Moeed Yousuf was also not visible in the minutes of the meeting.
Naeem Bukhari also presented Fawad Chaudhry’s point of order in the court. The Chief Justice inquired that instead of ruling on the point of order, the answer should not have been taken from the opposition. Naeem Bukhari said that point of order is not discussed.
Justice Mazhar Alam and Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhel remarked that the proceedings of the Parliament were hardly two or three minutes long. Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhel remarked that the ruling was given by the Deputy Speaker while the signatures on the ruling belong to the Speaker. Where are the signatures of the Deputy Speaker on the ruling? Naeem Bukhari said that the document presented is probably not original.
At the beginning of the arguments, Justice Jamal Mandokhel had asked Naeem Bukhari whether it was unconstitutional for the Speaker not to hold a no-confidence vote. Naeem Bukhari questioned that if the Speaker had rejected the point of order, would the court have intervened even then?
Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan asked whether the pending motion of no-confidence could be rejected on the point of order. Naeem Bukhari said that the Speaker can reject the no-confidence motion on the point of order. This has never happened before but the Speaker has the power. Now new elections have been announced and now the matter is with the people. This should not be the case.
Arguments of lawyer Prime Minister Imtiaz Siddiqui
During the hearing, the Chief Justice remarked that apparently Article 95 has been violated. If anyone else has a majority, the government should announce the election. Billions of rupees are spent by the nation on holding elections and every time the nation loses billions from elections, this is in the national interest.
Imtiaz Siddiqui, counsel for Prime Minister Imran Khan, argued that the court had not interfered in the proceedings of Parliament in the past and the matter before the court was a matter of House proceedings. The Chief Justice said that the court has to look after the national interest.
Imtiaz Siddiqui argued that the proceedings of the House were beyond the jurisdiction of the judiciary but the court asked the parliament to clean up its own mess. The Prime Minister is now acting on the instructions of the President.
Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan remarked that if a coalition government is formed, is it possible to put the largest party against the wall.
The Chief Justice queried that the petitioners had said that ruling could not come after the Leo Grant, the petitioners are of the view that ruling could have come before the motion of no-confidence was moved on March 28 Will say
Imtiaz Siddiqui, counsel for the Prime Minister, said that the opposition had not objected to the presidency of the Deputy Speaker. ۔
The Chief Justice remarked that the law is that the court will decide the merits of the parliamentary proceedings and the court will review the extent to which the merits of the proceedings are meted out.
Imtiaz Siddiqui argued that if the speaker knew that there was external funding or a threat to the country’s integrity, he would save the country even outside the law and the speaker made a better decision according to his oath Is the case
He further said that if Article 69 is read in conjunction with Article 127 then parliamentary proceedings have full protection and the Supreme Court cannot interfere in the proceedings of Parliament under Article 69.
Justice Muneeb Akhtar remarked that the decisions referred to by the Supreme Court were not binding on them. Justice Muneeb Akhtar remarked that the decisions cited contained observations and the court was not bound by the observations made in the decisions.
Lawyer Imtiaz Siddiqui said that the Deputy Speaker relied on the National Security Committee and the National Security Committee could not be affected.
The Chief Justice questioned whether the Deputy Speaker had any material available on the basis of which he gave the ruling. Was the ruling of the Deputy Speaker based on good faith? When were the minutes of the National Security Committee placed before the Deputy Speaker?
In reply, lawyer Imtiaz Siddiqui said that he did not know about the issue of the Deputy Speaker, to which the Chief Justice asked him not to talk about what he did not know.
The Chief Justice said that according to him, the Deputy Speaker had the material on the day of voting which was rolled out. Inquired that the Prime Minister violated the limits of Article 58, what will be the consequences? The Deputy Speaker had no problem with the voting on March 28, but on the day of voting came the ruling. Why didn’t the Speaker reject the no-confidence motion on March 28?
Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan remarked that if the Assembly had not been dissolved, the House could have ended the ruling of the Deputy Speaker but the Prime Minister took advantage of the situation and dissolved the Assembly.