Justice Isa’s review petition

SC says independence of judiciary linked to its accountability

Statesman Report

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court is hearing Justice Qazi Faez Isa’s petition seeking additional review of the judgement in a case pertaining to the presidential reference against him.

A six-member bench led by Justice Umar Ata Bandial and comprising Justice Manzoor Ahmad Malik, Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel, Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin Ahmed is hearing the petition.

As the hearing began, Justice Isa’s wife Sarina Isa said the SC Registrar made a mistake in the formation of a six-member bench, stressing that it was against the Supreme Court’s rules. “How can a six-member bench hear a petition seeking review of a decision given by a seven-member bench?”

Sarina said Prime Minister Imran Khan’s special assistant Shahzad Akbar conducted press conferences to influence public opinion against her husband. 

During the proceedings, Sarina’s mention of the top judge’s name as a respondent in the petition irked Justice Bandial. “Be careful when you speak about the institution and its head. The chief justice has the authority to constitute a bench.”

Sarina apologised, adding that she “did not mean to offend any honourable judge”.

Justice Bandial remarked that she was appearing as a family member and has limited knowledge of the law. The judge affirmed that a six-member bench cannot overturn the decision of a seven-member bench.

She then sought the constitution of a 10-member bench to hear the review petition. ���