SC has right to take suo motu notice: counsel

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ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court was told on Tuesday that it had the jurisdiction and power to review the decisions of the Parliamentary Committee under the Article 184 of the constitution.
A four-member special bench comprising Justice Mahmood Akhtar Shahid Siddiqui, Justice Jawwad S Khawaja, Justice Tariq Parvez and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain was hearing the government’s review petition against the apex court’s March 4 decision, which set aside the committee’s decision to reject the extension of services of four additional judges of the LHC and two additional judges of the SHC for a year.
In his arguments, Makhdoom Ali Khan, counsel for the four LHC additional judges, rebutted the stance taken by Additional Attorney General KK Agha against the SC’s suo motu jurisdiction. Khan argued that taking suo motu notice under Article 184(3) of the constitution was not against Article 10A of the constitution.
“If PC rejects the recommendations of the Judicial Commission, then it should have to give valid reasons,” he argued. The court adjourned further hearing till Wednesday (today), when Khan will continue his arguments.
NO CHANGE OF GOVT COUNSEL: Separately, Attorney General Anwarul Haq told a 16-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, on Tuesday that the government stood firm on its plea for change of counsel in its review petition against the National Reconciliation Ordinance verdict.
Haq said he had tried his best to convince the government not to press for change of counsel, and had also suggested a middle way, but the government had stuck to its guns. The hearing was adjourned for two weeks because Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani was absent due to illness.
During the hearing, Law Ministry Solicitor General Nasir Ali Shah filed his reply to a show-cause notice issued to him at the last hearing for giving a false statement about the withdrawal of the government’s Advocate-on-Record (AOR) in the petition Raja Abdul Ghafoor.