Supreme Court's Justice Mazahar Naqvi resigns after misconduct allegations

"It is no longer possible for me to continue to serve as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan," says Naqvi

By
Abdul Qayyum Siddiqui
Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi. — SC website/File
Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi. — SC website/File 

  • Naqvi says it was "honour" to serve as judge of LHC, SC.
  • Development came after SC declined to halt SCJ proceedings.
  • SJC had issued show cause notice to Justice Naqvi over complaints.


ISLAMABAD: Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi of the Supreme Court on Wednesday stepped down from his post following misconduct allegations.

"It was an honour to be appointed and to serve as a Judge first of the Lahore High Court, Lahore and then as the Supreme Court of Pakistan. In the circumstances which are a matter of public knowledge and to some extent public record, it is no longer possible for me to continue to serve as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Considerations of due process also compel so," the judge said in a resignation letter sent to President Arif Alvi.

"I, therefore. effective today resign as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan," the letter added.

The development came a day after the Supreme Court declined to halt the proceedings being conducted by the SJC against Justice Naqvi with the ruling that without hearing the case on merits, stay cannot be granted.

A three-member bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Amin-ud-Din Khan and comprising Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail and Justice Musrat Hilali, heard the petition of Justice Mazahar, challenging the SJC proceedings as well as the show cause notice issued to him on the charge of misconduct.

The SJC, on October 27 last year, issued a show cause notice to Justice Naqvi amid various complaints alleging bench manipulation and financial misconduct by the SC judge. Pakistan Bar Council, advocate Mian Dawood and others had filed complaints against the Supreme Court judge.

In his response, the Supreme Court judge raised issues with the inquiry and called for Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Qazi Faez Isa and two other judges to recuse themselves from the matter.

On November 20, he contested the SJC proceedings and also challenged the show-cause notice issued to him by the council, saying the initiation of proceedings was coram non-judice and without lawful authority.

Subsequently, on November 22, a second show cause notice was served by the SJC, demanding a detailed response from the judge regarding the allegations raised by multiple petitioners.

Justice Naqvi then on January 04 filed a petition in the apex court under Article 184(3) of the Constitution, terming the misconduct complaints filed against him a direct and blatant attack on the independence of the judiciary.

It is important to note that the top court judge's name also surfaced in connection with the recent audio leaks purportedly involving him, former Punjab chief minister Parvez Elahi and others.

Elevated to the top court on March 16, 2020, Justice Naqvi made headlines when in January 2020, as the Lahore High Court (LHC) judge, he ruled in favour of former military ruler Pervez Musharraf.

The LHC bench comprised Justice Naqvi, Justice Muhammad Ameer Bhatti and Justice Chaudhry Masood Jahangir.

The controversial verdict of the LHC was annulled by the Supreme Court today.