The Supreme Court gave the government a week to resolve the objections to the ECL amendments and bring the amendments into law.
The Supreme Court heard a case of alleged interference in the investigative agencies of government figures. The court gave the government a week to legalize the ECL amendments and said it would issue an order in case of non-compliance.
During the hearing in the Supreme Court, the Chief Justice while addressing the Attorney General said that the name of such accused was also removed from the exit control list which was included by the Supreme Court. Who includes the names of NAB cases in ECL?
In response to a query from the Chief Justice, the Attorney General replied that names were added to the ECL on the instructions of the Chairman NAB. On which the Chief Justice said that it means that the NAB asks to put the name in ECL only after thinking. Every case of NAB is related to corruption but NAB does not include the name of every accused in ECL. The Chief Justice said that according to NAB, the names of the accused of corruption amounting to billions of rupees were removed from ECL.
Justice Mazahir Naqvi remarked during the hearing that it would have been better to name each case separately. The government says that going abroad is a fundamental right. If so, what is the justification of ECL?
During the hearing, the Attorney General said that in my opinion there should be no ECL, to which the Chief Justice said that he would not go for personal opinion in the case. The court order may cause difficulties, but take appropriate action within a week. We do not want to interfere in executive power at this time.
Justice Muneeb Akhtar’s query that who decided to implement ECL amendments from previous dates? Responding to a question, the Attorney General said that the decision to remove the names and implement them from the previous dates was taken on the recommendations of the sub-committee.
During the hearing of the case in the Supreme Court, the FIA DG Law said that 8 persons including Sharjeel Memon left the country and did not return. The Chief Justice directed the DG FIA to inform the court if anyone talks of forcibly filing a case. You are a civil servant, no one’s interference should be recognized.
The court sought records of high profile cases of FIA and NAB and ordered that a soft copy of all the evidence and records be submitted to the apex court. If the record is lost, you will get it from the Supreme Court.
The Prosecutor General asked the court to give time to the NAB to review the cases. Only after the appointment of Chairman NAB will it be possible to carry out the orders.
The Chief Justice said that with reference to the Chairman NAB, it is expected that the government will make a thoughtful appointment. The government is expected to appoint a clean, honest, competent and reputable person as Chairman NAB. Talking to the Attorney General, the Chief Justice said, “I hope you have understood what I mean.” The NAB should also ensure that its institution is not used for revenge against anyone.
The Chief Justice said the court was concerned about independent investigation and trial. The justice system needs to be improved. It is not correct to say that Pakistan’s judiciary is ranked 128th. The Chief Justice said that Pakistan’s ranking was not based on data but on impression.
The court adjourned further hearing of the suo motu notice till June 14.