Babar urges SC to follow due process in his case
28 June, 2012
ISLAMABAD: Raising objections to the Supreme Court's (SC) proceedings in a contempt of court case against him, former law minister Babar Awan requested the court on Wednesday to follow due process in the case and said it should not give any judgement "which will be disowned by itself in the future".
Babar, also cancelling his power of attorney regarding his counsel, started to defend himself before the court.
A two-member SC bench, comprising Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan and Justice Muhammad Ather Saeed, heard the contempt of court case against Babar for addressing a press conference against the court's December 1, 2011, order to form a commission in the memo case.
At the start of the hearing, when Babar's counsel, Ali Zafar, was giving arguments in the case, the former minister stood up and wanted to speak before the bench but he was not allowed.
Upon this, Babar told the bench that his media trail was going on.
He also said that he wanted to withdraw power of attorney of his counsel as well as advocate on record (AOR) and would defend himself.
In view of his aggressive arguments, the court postponed the case proceedings for 15 minutes. Later, Babar was allowed to contest his case.
Resuming his arguments, he raised several objections to the court's proceedings and said that he was unaware under what procedure the court wanted to move ahead in this case.
He also said that the court did not hear prosecutor in his case which was surprising as it was not the court but the prosecutor's job to level charges against him.
"Access to justice is my fundamental right. I want due process in view of Article 10-A of the constitution and I am innocent," he added.
He also objected to the chief justice's chamber order to fix his contempt case after examining the record of press conference.
Babar said that there were two opinions regarding the existence of contempt law in the country.
The former law minister also requested the bench to summon the record of 29 contempt cases as he would prove that he had not committed contempt of court.
He said the chief executive of Pakistan had already told the court that Babar had communicated the party's point of view during the press conference.
On the request of former minister, the court issued a notice to the attorney general of Pakistan on a plea regarding the former minister's acquittal.
The court, however, refrained from issuing a notice in his plea regarding production of documents that he has mentioned in his second application. The court adjourned the hearing until Monday.
The court has already rejected the unconditional apology of Babar in this case and framed charges against him. Babar's counsel had said that it was a unique case in which the court was initiating contempt proceedings after submission of an unconditional apology.