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Petitions against Panama verdict

Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif challenged Supreme Court’s judgment against him. He was disqualified for failing to declare unclaimed wages earned as an executive of a Dubai-based company owned by his son in the assets statement he filed alongside his nomination papers for NA-120 in 2013 general election. Nawaz Sharif has filed three similar review petitions under Article 188 of the constitution over the court’s ruling regarding his disqualification and its direction asking NAB to file references against him and his children. The petition provides 19 reasons which, Sharif argues, provide proof for why he should not have been disqualified, and that merit the SC recalling its July 28 verdict against him. He has also pleaded that the court suspend operation of the judgment till the final decision on his review petition.
The former PM contends that the final judgment suffer from errors apparent on account of being violative of articles 175 (2) and (3) and articles 4, 9, 10A, 14, and 25 of the Constitution. The review petition states that if there had been undisputed evidence that Sharif had received a salary from Capital FZE but had deliberately concealed the amount in his declaration of assets and liabilities in the nomination papers, the issue of disqualification could have arisen. However, it is stated that when he has neither received any salary nor intended to claim it, it cannot be inferred that he acted dishonestly in omitting mention of the salary as an asset in his nomination papers.
The review petition further states that provisions of Article 62(1)(f) could not be invoked against Sharif without holding a regular trial and providing him with a full opportunity to provide evidence in support of the facts stated in the written submissions and to rebut any evidence to the contrary. He also submits that there is no precedent in the judicial history of Pakistan or the world for four final judgments in one case and requests that this be resolved and the inherent anomalies removed by reviewing the final order of the court, as well as the judgment. Some legal experts believe there are few chances that the judgment will be reversed in exercising the review jurisdiction because its scope is very limited. Some other legal experts have the opinion that Nawaz Sharif may get relief because of lacunas in the judgment. It is good decision to opt legal way to get relief. We hope it will be decided on merit and justice will prevail.

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