Tuesday Jun 29, 2021
ISLAMABAD: A leader of the Pakistan Peoples Party's (PPP) Karachi chapter Monday admitted before a Supreme Court bench that he was not in his "senses" while he made insulting remarks about the chief justice of Pakistan earlier this month.
According to a report in Dawn.com, Masoodur Rehman Abbasi, a PPP office-bearer from Karachi's PS-114 constituency, appeared before a four-member bench of the apex court to answer for his outburst against Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed.
A video showing Abbasi uttering profane remarks against the chief justice had gone viral on social media earlier this month.
Abbasi is facing contempt of court charges for his remarks against the top judge. Justice Umar Ata Bandial, who is heading the bench, asked the accused to submit his response in writing, adding that a verbal statement from him would not help in deciding the case.
Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan inquired whether Abbasi was in his sense when he spoke derogatory words for the chief justice.
“No sir, I was not in my senses,” Abbasi responded.
Justice Bandial, however, asked the accuse to consult his counsel and then submit a reply in writing.
The court asked the accused whether he was confident that the video, in which he can be seen abusing the chief justice, was not tampered with. In response, Abbasi admitted his mistake and said he respected the judiciary.
The accused told the court that he felt dejected as his party had suspended his basic membership and "has deserted me”.
Justice Bandia explained to Abbasi that the court intended to wrap proceedings of the case as soon as possible. However, he also said that the court will decide whether or not to appoint a prosecutor to gather evidence against the accused.
In response to an inquiry from the bench, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) said it would remove the controversial clip from social media only after the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) completed its inquiry.
PTA’s Director General (Law) Sajjad Awan told the court that removing the clip from social media may adversely impact the progress of the investigation.
The bench instructed the PTA to coordinate with the FIA to have the clip removed, noting that the Pakistan Electronic Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) had informed the court that the speech was not aired on electronic media.
Justice Aijaz-ul-Ahsan asked the additional attorney-general to present the evidence he had gathered so far from the inquiry in court " in legal form".
The Supreme Court asked the attorney general to assist the authorities in collecting legal material, before suspending proceedings of the case till Friday.
The FIA submitted an interim report regarding the case, saying that Abbasi's audio and video clip are both genuine and unedited.
To verify the clip's authenticiy, the FIA representative told the court that it had the digital forensic lab to conduct a forensic analysis of the video clip.
The lab replied by saying that the video had been uploaded on various social media platforms. The video was two minutes and 15 seconds long and that it was first uploaded on Facebook and later posted by different people on other sites, including You Tube.
The FIA said it had preserved data of the Facebook accounts which had uploaded the video.