Pakistan Supreme Court to announce verdict in case of deputy speaker's decision to reject no-trust motion against Imran Khan at 7:30 pm today

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Thursday, April 07, 2022, 04:53 PM IST
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Imran Khan | Photo Credit: PTI

Pakistan's Supreme Court will announce a verdict in the case of deputy speaker's decision to reject the no-trust motion against embattled Prime Minister Imran Khan at 7:30 pm today (Thursday).

The Supreme Court has reserved its verdict in the case and will announce it today evening, said Pakistan's Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial.

During the hearing, Chief Justice Bandial noted that National Assembly deputy speaker Qasim Suri's move to dismiss a no-confidence motion against Imran Khan through a controversial ruling is, prima facie, a violation of Article 95 of the Constitution.

Chief Justice Bandial, who is heading a five-member bench comprising Justices Ijazul Ahsan, Mohammad Ali Mazhar Miankhel, Munib Akhtar and Jamal Khan Mandokhel, made the observation during the hearing today.

Security was beefed up around the court premises in anticipation of the important verdict. Riot police were deployed outside the court.

National Assembly Deputy Speaker Suri on Sunday ruled that the no-confidence motion was linked with the "foreign conspiracy" to topple the government and hence was not maintainable. Minutes later, President Alvi dissolved the National Assembly on the advice of Prime Minister Khan.

Chief Justice Bandial on Wednesday sought the minutes of the recent meeting of the National Security Council which had discussed a letter purportedly showing evidence of the "foreign conspiracy" to oust the PTI-led government Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan, who was the last to give his arguments on Thursday, told court that he would not be able to give details of the recent meeting of the National Security Committee in an open courtroom. He asserted that the court could issue an order without questioning anyone's loyalty.

He argued that the prime minister was the "biggest stakeholder" and, therefore, had the power to dissolve the assembly.

He also pointed out that the assembly would stand dissolved if the president did not make a decision on the prime minister's advice within 48 hours. He argued that voting on the no-confidence motion was not the fundamental right of a lawmaker.

During the hearing on Wednesday, the Chief Justice repeatedly reminded the lawyers to conclude their arguments at the earliest to let the bench issue an order.

The outcome will not only decide the fate of no-confidence but also the dissolution of the National Assembly and the upcoming elections.

If Khan gets a favourable ruling, elections will take place within 90 days. If the court rules against the deputy speaker, Parliament will reconvene and hold the no-confidence vote against Khan, experts said.

(With PTI inputs)

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