Govt's move to clip CJP's power is only to pressurise judiciary: Imran Khan

Imran Khan says Shehbaz Sharif took decision in haste and rulers never want to see judiciary independent

Web Desk
Wednesday, March 29, 2023
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan speaking during a televised address on March 28, 2023. — Instagram/imrankhan.pti

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf(PTI) Chairman Imran Khan censured the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM)-led government for its attempt to clip the discretionary powers of the chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) to take suo motu notice, saying the move is intended to bring the judiciary under pressure.

"Every one of us wants judicial reforms. But, their [the PDM parties'] only goal is to escape from the election," the PTI chief said in a televised address moments after the government moved a bill "the Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Bill, 2023" in the National Assembly on Tuesday.

The government tabled the bill just hours after CJP Umar Ata Bandial expressed displeasure with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), saying the electoral body penned its decision to postpone polls in Punjab in haste.

The CJP passed these remarks while hearing the PTI's petition challenging the Election Commission's decision to delay the Punjab elections which should take place in April under the Constitution.

Imran Khan said that there is a need for judicial reforms in Pakistan, adding that, the rulers never want to see the judiciary independent. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif made the decision in a hurry, only to put pressure on the judiciary, he underlined.

"The handlers are in brazen collusion with the rulers. The neutrals are backing them. When someone criticises them, they say that you are humiliating the institution," he said.

The rulers are extremely cruel but they wear very innocent faces, the PTI chief said, adding that members of his party's social media team have been picked up.

"At least 40 cases of terrorism have been lodged against me. Am I a terrorist? The government is doing nothing in accordance with the law," he stressed.

The former prime minister warned that if the incumbent rulers continue like this, the game will soon go out of everyone's hands. "There is still a need for a course correction", Khan said, adding the "neutrals" should correct their path as the path of fear and intimidation they have taken is backfiring.

"They also took my cook with them and are asking him what I eat. When I was the prime minister, two of my servants were put on parole and had also asked Shahbaz Gill what I eat. Will this not make anyone suspicious why they want to know what someone eats?" he alleged.

He reiterated that the only solution to the current problems is fair and transparent elections.