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Prosecution witnesses cross-examined in Daniyal Aziz contempt court case

Daniyal Aziz
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Today, two witnesses recorded their statements in the contempt of court proceedings against the PML-N leader and federal minister for privatization Daniyal Aziz. The Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) resumed the hearing of the cases, and video clips of the controversial statements were also played.

SC opened the contempt proceedings over his allegedly contemptuous statements on different television talk shows. In the last court proceeding on March 26, the defense was directed to submit a witness list and arguments before the today’s hearing.

The apex court had taken a suo motu notice of ‘anti-judiciary’ speeches made by the Aziz. The minister is “committed to scandalizing the court”, the court had observed. SC framed charges against Aziz and was indicted on March 13 under the article 204, Section 3 of the Contempt Ordinance 2003.

It appears as Nawaz is hoping to draw attention through a contempt of court charge, to divert attention from accountability court cases expecting an unfavorable decision.

The three-judge bench headed by the Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh and comprising of Justice Mushir Alam and Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel resumed hearing today. According to the charge-sheet, Mr. Aziz brought the judiciary into hatred, obstructed court proceedings and in three statements he delivered, he scandalized the court. 

On September 08, 2017, Aziz alleged during a press conference that the apex court judge had prepared a corruption reference after summoning the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) Lahore team. Continuing his anti-judiciary rhetoric on December 15, 2017, Aziz alleged that the purpose of disqualifying Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Jahangir Tareen was to save Imran Khan.

Read more: Daniyal Aziz “scandalizing the court”

Minister also alleged that court purposely differentiated between the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan’s verdict. He alleged that Khan was spared which explicitly points towards political engineering. “It was said that all this was being done according to a script,” the court said in the verdict.

Moreover, Aziz’s claims against Justice Ijazul Ahsan on December 31 was also part of the contempt proceeding. Aziz refused to accept the charges and decided to contest the charges. Today, the bench recorded the prosecution witnesses and Aziz was asked to submit his detail reply after this. 

SC opened the contempt proceedings over his allegedly contemptuous statements on different television talk shows. In the last court proceeding on March 26, the defense was directed to submit a witness list and arguments before the today’s hearing.

Additional Attorney General (AAG) Waqar Rana produced Director Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) Haji Adam, Dawn News Tv reporter, and Dunya newspaper was presented as the prosecution witnesses. Aziz’s counsel Ali Raza cross-examined the prosecution witness.

Clips from Dawn News TV was played during the proceeding, which was aired on December 21. After listening to Aziz’s statement against the top judiciary, Justice Saeed commented that court may also have to start proceedings against Aziz in other crimes too. Another clip was aired on Dawn News TV on December 2, where Danyal apparently passed contemptuous comments against the judiciary.  

Read more: SC issues contempt of court notices to Daniyal Aziz and Talal…

One clip was on aired on Neo TV on September 8, 2017, where Aziz commented on judiciary at the press conference which was held at the Press Information Department. The Dunya News reporters, however, failed to verify comments made in the court where he stated that “the monitoring judge had the accountability references [against Sharifs and Dar] prepared”.

Aziz refused to accept the charges and decided to contest the charges. Today, the bench recorded the prosecution witnesses and Aziz was asked to submit his detail reply after this.

However, he did confirm that is report was not edited and Aziz had not disapproved his statement, making a reliable source of his contemptuous remarks. The court adjourned the proceedings until April 16, where Ali Raza will submit a list of defense witnesses, which will be produced before the court on next case proceedings.

Read more: Gun & Country Club Islamabad shuts down protesting against MNA Danyal…

It appears that house of Nawaz along with its aides is working on agenda to malign the court and gather popular support against judiciary using victim card. PML-N leaders have continued their tirade against the judiciary, expecting no serious charges, since Hashmi was released without any serious charge which encouraged the other party leaders to continue their anti-judiciary rhetoric.

Nawaz has been successful in his strategy, maligned judiciary and held massive rallies across Pakistan, and demonstrating street power, convincing people of their victimhood. It appears as Nawaz is hoping to draw attention through a contempt of court charge, to divert attention from accountability court cases expecting an unfavorable decision.


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