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Supreme Court Petitioned to Investigate Islamabad High Court Judges’ Letter on Spy Agencies

On Wednesday, Mian Dawood Advocate filed a constitutional plea in the Supreme Court, urging for an open court investigation into a letter penned by six judges of the Islamabad High Court to the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC).

The letter, written the previous day, called for a judicial convention to address alleged interference by intelligence agencies in the judiciary. In the petition, the advocate requested the apex court to establish an empowered commission for a thorough probe, characterizing the judges’ letter as a “premeditated plan.

The judges from the Islamabad High Court who authored the letter include Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kiyani, Justice Tariq Mehmood Jahangiri, Justice Babar Sattar, Justice Sardar Ejaz Ishaq Khan, Justice Arbab Muhammad Tahir, and Justice Saman Fafat Imtiaz.

The letter sought guidance from the Supreme Judicial Council on addressing the purported interference of intelligence agencies in judicial matters. It highlighted the duty of a judge to report and respond to attempts by members of the executive, including intelligence operatives, to interfere with their official functions, labeling such actions as intimidation. Additionally, it emphasized the duty to report similar actions concerning colleagues or other court members under the High Court’s supervision.

This development follows closely after the Supreme Court’s ruling declaring the removal of former IHC Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui illegal, instructing that he be considered retired. The verdict highlighted the SJC’s handling of Justice Siddiqui’s case, noting its dismissal of the relevance of the allegations he raised and its opinion on his failure to substantiate them.

The IHC judges, in their letter, pointed out a lack of guidance in the SJC’s code of conduct for judges regarding how to address incidents akin to intimidation and interference with judicial independence. They expressed a belief in the necessity of investigating whether there exists an ongoing policy within the executive branch to interfere in judicial affairs.

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