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Zardari to file reference on IHC judges' issue

24 November, 2012

ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari intends to file a reference under Article 186 of the constitution to settle the Islamabad High Court judges' appointment issue in a transparent manner.

Speaking before a four-judge bench headed by Justice Khilji Arif Hussain which resumed the hearing of IHC judges' appointment case, Attorney General Irfan Qadir said that as per the direction of the court he tried to meet the president, but he was preoccupied with the D8 heads of states conference.

Qadir said he then contacted Federal Minister for Law and Justice Farooq H Naek, who told him that "the president intends to file a reference under Article 186 to obtain the advice of the apex court on the constitutional and legal questions which have arisen with regard to the elevation of Chief Justice of Islamabad High Court Hameedur Rehman, and the appointment of Noorul Haq Qureshi and Shoukat Aziz Siddiqui, including the non-confirmation of Azim Afridi as judge of Islamabad High Court."

He said that a reference under Article 186 of the constitution is being prepared to settle all these issues. The bench had on November 22 directed the attorney general to obtain the president's views regarding the legality of the commission if the senior-most judge was not available and most senior available judge sat on the commission.

During the proceedings, Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa observed that in the presidential reference, besides the attorney general, the court would also get the views of all the advocates general. He said that this was the constitutional way to seek the court's advice on the matter. The attorney general said that the president has shown lot of faith in the court.

End.

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