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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Chief Justice Pakistan Challenges PTI Members Disappearances Petition

The Chief Justice questioned Ahsan's standing to approach the Supreme Court on this matter and suggests that the petition may be filed for the benefit of a political party.

Chief Justice of Pakistan, Qazi Faez Isa, has raised concerns about the validity of the petition filed by senior politician and lawyer Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan regarding the alleged “enforced disappearances” of PTI (Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf) leaders. The Chief Justice questions Ahsan’s standing to approach the Supreme Court on this matter and suggests that the petition may be filed for the benefit of a political party.

There is a possibility that Aitzaz Ahsan himself may appear before a three-judge Supreme Court bench to justify his plea. However, CJP Isa is currently unsatisfied with Ahsan’s locus standi, noting that individuals mentioned in the petition, who were reportedly missing in 2023, have since returned and left the PTI without providing statements about their alleged “enforced disappearances.”

Read more: PTI will retain the “BAT” or not? PHC holds verdict

The political landscape has been marked by a significant clash between powerful circles and the PTI since the change of regime through a no-confidence resolution against former Prime Minister Imran Khan. This conflict has escalated, particularly after the riots on May 9 of the previous year. Former CJP Umar Ata Bandial attempted to provide relief to the PTI during challenging times but faced challenges. PTI supporters have criticized Justice Isa on social media since he assumed the role of CJP in September of the previous year.

The PTI seeks judicial intervention in various matters, aiming for a level playing field in the lead-up to the next general elections. However, a social media campaign against CJP Isa has not proven successful. The charged environment has led to pressure from both the PTI and its opponents on the superior judiciary.

Read more: Report indicates PTI retains its position as the most popular party in Pakistan

The PTI is pushing for the allotment of the ‘cricket bat’ electoral symbol, believing it would make them the leading party in the upcoming elections. A three-judge bench led by CJP Isa is set to hear the PTI’s contempt petition against the Election Commission of Pakistan for not implementing the SC’s order to address the party’s grievances and provide a level playing field. There is speculation that the elections could be delayed if the PTI receives its electoral symbol through judicial intervention.