Declares SJC’s show-cause notice to the judge null and void
The Supreme Court of Pakistan has quashed the government’s reference against Justice Qazi Faez Isa.
The show-cause notice issued to the judge by the Supreme Judicial Council has been declared null and void too.
Justice Umar Ata Bandial announced the reserved verdict on Friday.
The court, however, has ordered the Inland Revenue commissioner to issue appropriate notices to the judge’s family and children under the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 within seven days.
Sarina Isa and the children have been ordered to submit replies to the notice without causing any delay in the investigation. The proceedings should be completed in 60 days, and the commissioner should issue an order in 75 days, according to the written order.
The FBR has been directed to submit a report on the matter within seven days to the court.
Three judges, Justice Maqbool Baqar, Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah and Justice Yahya Afridi, were not in favour of referring the case to the FBR.
“One of our pivotal Constitutional values is that the independence of the judiciary shall be fully secured,” they said in the judgement. “A judge like any other citizen of Pakistan enjoys the inalienable constitutional right to be treated in accordance with the law”.
On June 2, 2019 the government confirmed that a presidential reference had been filed in the Supreme Judicial Council against the judge for owning foreign assets. Justice Isa has been accused of misconduct over failure to declare his wife and children’s UK properties. According to the judge, his wife and children have on their names three properties in the W2, E10 and E11 areas of London.
Justice Isa challenged the reference in the top court. He asked that the reference should be quashed and PM’s Assets Recovery Unit be termed null and void. He even asked for action to be taken against Special Assistant on Accountability Shahzad Akbar.
Sarina Isa, the wife of Justice Isa, revealed on Thursday the details of her London properties to the Supreme Court while recording her statement via a video link. She even submitted her money trail, tax records, bank documents and property papers to the court.
She revealed that she bought one property for £23,600 in 2004, another for £270,000, which is under her and her daughter’s name, and the third one for £245,000 in 2013. Her son lives in one of the properties and has put the other two on rent.
Justice Isa, who is in line to become the chief justice of Pakistan, has accused in a petition the PTI government of spying on him to discover his family’s properties.