SC Ignoring JIT’s ‘Biased’ Attitude: PM’s Spokesman

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ISLAMABAD: A spokesman for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday alleged that the Supreme Court was not paying heed to what he called the ‘biased’ attitude of the joint investigation team (JIT) probing the Panama Papers case.

Some ‘puppets’ had been creating hurdles in the way of the government from day one, the PM’s spokesman, Mussadiq Malik, said at a joint press conference with MNA Daniyal Aziz at the Press Information Department.

“As the PML-N assumed power, it was accused of election rigging. Then came the dharna during which the Constitution Avenue was blocked and the PTV building and Parliament House were attacked. The moment the government was able to take a breath, a leak came and with the second breath another leak surfaced.

Says probe body looking for a ‘new Masood Mahmood’

“The government was still to stabilise when yet another leak came out of the previous leak in which some unidentified persons and departments are said to be involved. This is all being done by the ‘puppets’ referred to by the prime minister on Thursday,” Mr Malik said.

“Is this happening for the first time in the country? Was former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto not tried in a fake case? Isn’t the current situation similar to one when Masood Mahmood became an approver? Is the JIT in search of a new Masood Mahmood by hurling threats of 16-year imprisonment,” he raised the questions and said: “The puppet is in fact a Masood Mahmood of the present decade.”

He said that it should be explored if ‘the puppet’ had links within the country or abroad because the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was changing global politics and many countries were opposed to the mega project. “It is imperative that we have friendly relations with Afghanistan to link the CPEC with Central Asian states but some countries do not want us to have friendly ties with Kabul,” he said.

The spokesman said the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had drawn the Supreme Court’s attention to the JIT’s ‘biased composition, biased attitude and biased modus operandi’ but the court was paying no heed to it.

Asked whether the government would accept the JIT’s findings after expressing no confidence in it, he said: “The JIT is not a decision-making authority. It will only submit its report to the Supreme Court and the verdict will be issued by the apex court.”

“If this atmosphere continues, we may accept the decision of the Supreme Court but it is not necessary that we agree with it,” the PM’s spokesman said, adding that there was a clear difference between acceptance and agreement. “We accept all decisions of the apex court but it does not mean we agree with them.”

He said the government would keep appearing before the Supreme Court despite “biased and dictatorial” attitude of the JIT. “History will not accept any decision of the JIT based on any bias,” he added.

Mr Malik said that the 570-page judgement of the Panama Papers case had determined how members of the JIT would be appointed but the method had not been followed. “Each department concerned was supposed to present a list of three officials of whom one was to be chosen by the Supreme Court to become a member of the JIT,” he added.

Asked about the leak of a photograph of the prime minister’s son Hussain Nawaz from the JIT interrogation room, he said: “The matter is not confined to the photograph only. We have given evidence of biased attitude of the JIT to the Supreme Court but have not received any reply.”

Daniyal Aziz presented details of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan’s money trail, presented before the Supreme Court in his assets case, and claimed that there were glaring contradictions in the documents. “There are differences between the documents of transactions of funds Mr Khan received from his friend Rashid Khan and his former wife Jemima Khan from the UK,” he said.

Courtesy: Dawn

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