ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry on Thursday stepped down from the bench hearing the suo motu notice over allegations that Arsalan Iftikhar, son of the chief justice, had received Rs300 to 400 million from the owner of Bahria Town, Media reported.
On Wednesday, the chief justice had ignored a request made by Attorney General Irfan Qadir to recuse himself, instead of heading the bench, as commanded by the code of conduct for judges, saying the dignity of the institution being of prime importance was involved.“The chief justice being emotional should not hear the matter,” the AG had said. But he was told that the court would pass an appropriate order on Thursday to answer the objection in the light of the Holy Quran and Sunnah as well as different precedence from the law.
Moreover on Thursday, the Supreme Court also resumed its hearing of the suo motu notice which was now being heard by a two-judge bench comprising Justice Jawwad S. Khwaja and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain.During the hearing, Zahid Bukhari, the counsel for Malik Riaz, requested the court for more time.When the hearing began and before the chief justice stepped down from the bench, the chief justice asked senior journalist Kamran Khan whether he had any documentary evidence pertaining to the allegations against Arsalan Iftikhar.
Responding to which, Mr Khan said that Malik Riaz had shown him certain documents.Mr Khan told the court that he had seen the record of Arsalan Iftikhar’s travel details as well as a copy of his passport and receipts. Moreover, Mr Khan said that although the documents had been shown to him by Mr Riaz, he was not provided with any copies.
Earlier during Wednesday’s hearing, a visibly disturbed chief justice vowed to deal strictly in accordance with the law if Dr Arsalan was found guilty.“I will be the last person to spare my son or any relative,” the chief justice observed in an obvious indication to protect his honour and integrity at all cost. – Dawn