Supreme Court to review NAB Act changes in line with international standards: CJP

The Supreme Court on Wednesday adjourned the hearing of a Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) petition challenging the recent amendment of the NAB Ordinance until October 18.

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint/Pakistan Point News – October 12, 2022): The Supreme Court on Wednesday adjourned the hearing of a petition by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) challenging the recent amendment of the NAB Ordinance until 18 october.

Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial, heading the three-member bench that heard the case, noted that the higher court would consider amendments to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) order in accordance international standards and local laws.

He asked the petitioner’s lawyer, Khawaja Haris, to point out the facts and the impact of the amendments on the fundamental rights of the public.

The CJP observed that decisions used to be made within the cabinet and development working groups. If all cabinet or committee members are to be named as defendants on decisions, he questioned and said if so, then who would make the decisions.

He pointed out that if everything was discussed by parliament, the decision-making process would slow down.

He noted that the liquefied natural gas (LNG) file had been prepared without going into the facts, adding that such agreements were signed at the government level.

CJP Bandial observed that many bureaucrats were acquitted in NAB references, despite being imprisoned.

Judge Mansoor Ali Shah asked if the defendant, who escaped the NAB Act, could be tried under another law. Legislators were responsible for introducing laws and making changes to them, he added.

He asks if it was not a violation of fundamental rights when the NAB law was introduced in 1999.

Judge Ijaz ul Ahsan noted that the amendments to the NAB Act may foster corruption as they have allowed improper financial benefits.

The plaintiff’s attorney, Khawaja Haris, said there was no other law to deal with matters relating to assets beyond known sources of income. After the NAB Act amendments, lawsuits against defendants could be brought if the use of the financial benefit was proven against them. However, no case could be made against the children and front men of public office holders for enjoying financial benefits.