Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Senior Vice President Fawad Chaudhry has announced his intention to file a contempt of court complaint against the Minister of Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb for her recent remarks regarding an election delay case being reviewed by the Supreme Court. Aurangzeb had called into question the legitimacy of a letter from the Supreme Court registrar, referring to it as a “decision of one person.”
In response, Chaudhry criticized Aurangzeb and accused her of undermining the authority of the country’s courts. He also took aim at Nawaz Sharif, the leader of the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), for his recent criticisms of the judiciary.
During a news conference in London, Sharif had cast doubt on an impending decision by a three-member panel, pointing out that two of the judges on the panel had earlier ruled against him. He questioned how a decision rendered by this court could be upheld given his disapproval of the bench as a whole.
Fawad urged Sharif to reject the decision by the same three justices, which had served as the basis for the Shehbaz Sharif administration. He also emphasized the importance of negotiations with other political groups, though he noted that it takes two to negotiate.
Looking beyond the immediate political turmoil, Chaudhry argued that Pakistan needs to move beyond victimization in order to address its larger problems. He expressed no objection to Nawaz Sharif’s return to Pakistan and called for a recent change aimed at limiting the Chief Justice of Pakistan’s authority to be reevaluated.
The Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Bill, 2023, which the Senate passed on March 30, has drawn criticism from Chaudhry and others for its potential to limit the Chief Justice’s discretionary powers to take suo motu notice. Chaudhry also noted that the authority of the caretaker administration will expire at the end of April 30.
Despite the ongoing political turmoil, Chaudhry emphasized the importance of upholding the rule of law and respecting the authority of the country’s courts. He urged all political leaders to work together towards a peaceful and prosperous future for Pakistan.