On Monday, the Lahore High Court’s three judges bench focused Advocate General of Punjab (AGP) Ahmad Awais to submit in writing his response to a show cause notice dispensed to him under Contempt of Court Ordinance, 2002 for showing contemptuous conduct during declaration of an interim order against a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) holding fresh inquiry into the 2014 Model Town incident.

Mr. Awais seemed before the bench along with dozens of bar members including some former presidents of Lahore High Court Bar Association allied to Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s leader Hamid Khan led Professional Group.

Justice Muhammad Qasim Khan headed the bench with Justice Malik Shahzad Ahmad Khan and Justice Aalia Neelum.

Those judges were astonished when the bar leaders said the bench should show some tolerance and discharge the show cause notice allotted to the principal law officer of the province.

The three judges bench detected that the conduct of the advocate general was unparalleled, contemptuous and an attempt to pressurize the judges.

It was demanded by Mr. Awais to the bench as well; to withdraw the notice saying he had great respect for courts. He said what occurred in the court on last hearing was a result of misinterpretation and he never thought of committing disrespect of court.

The judges’ bench focused the AGP to submit in writing whatever he wanted to say in response to the notice. The bench postponed this matter till April 4th 2019 though allowed more time to the Punjab government to file its reply by April 11th on the appeals against formation of the new JIT.

The bench also issued notices to all members of the JIT.

Azhar Siddique advocate, on behalf of Pakistan Awami Tehreek dared the formation of the full bench saying it was not constituted legally. So at this the bench requested him to file written application on the matter.

On the date of March 22nd 2019, the judges’ bench with a majority decision of two to one suspended the JIT formed by Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf controlled Punjab government to hold fresh inquiry into the Model Town incident.

And at the time of the statement of the suspension order, AGP Awais along with other law officers had created a scene in the courtroom and lodged a protest against the decision on a cause that the office of the advocate general received no notice from the court about the proceedings.

Though the judges’ bench had noted that a law officer remained present during the whole measures and he did not choose to advance arguments. Taking exclusion to the conduct of the advocate general, the bench had issued him a show cause notice under the contempt of court law.

The other police officials and Khurram Rafiq, facing trial in the Model Town case, had filed the petitions challenging the lawfulness of the new JIT.

The attorneys of the supplicants had taken a appeal that the Code of Criminal Procedure (Cr.P.C) and {Anti-Terrorism Act 1997} did not allow the formation of fresh inquiry in a case after submission of challan and framing of charges in precise.

They also specified that the trial in the Model Town case started on a private complaint filed by Idara Minhajul Quran — Pakistan Awami Tehreek was near to conclusion as 86 out of 135 spectators had been testified before the trial court. They said a judicial review and a JIT had already investigated the firing occurrence.


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