SC wants to set better example in ZAB reference, says CJP Isa

Chief Justice of Pakistan Qazi Faez Isa on Monday said that the apex court wanted to “set a better example” in the presidential reference seeking to review the capital punishment awarded to former prime minister and Pakistan People’s Party founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in 1979.
CJP Isa said the Supreme Court was looking in the case at one person’s honour and seeking to fix history. The chief justice remarked this while hearing the presidential reference.The apex court larger bench, led by CJP Isa and comprising Justice Sardar Tariq Masood, Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, Justice Yahya Afridi, Justice Amin-ud-Din Khan, Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhel, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar, Justice Syed Hasan Azhar Rizvi and Justice Musarrat Hilali, resumed hearing of the reference seeking to revisit the “controversial” death sentence.

At the outset of the hearing, PPP leader Senator Raza Rabbani came to the rostrum. “Are you an amicus curiae?” questioned CJP Isa. To this, Rabbani said he was representing Sanam Bhutto, Bakhtawar Bhutto and Aseefa Bhutto in the case, adding that he has submitted a petition to become a party in the case.Meanwhile, Zahid Ibrahim, said he was representing Zulfikar Bhutto Jr and Fatima Bhutto.

Amicus curiae Makhdoom Ali Khan then began his arguments, saying that the chief justice had sought the transcript of an interview in the same case.At this, Justice Mazhar said that this reference was based on the interview of former judge Justice (retd) Naseem Hasan Shah.Justice Shah said that the top court cannot decide on the case just by watching an interview. “The court can only give an opinion on legal questions under Article 186,” he added.