IHC proposes forensic audit of Saqib Nisar’s alleged audio

IHC proposes forensic audit of Saqib Nisar’s alleged audio

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday proposed to conduct a forensic analysis of former chief justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar’s alleged audio clip and sought names of foreign authorised forensic agencies from the attorney general of Pakistan (AGP) and Pakistan Bar Council (PBC).
IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard a petition filed by Sindh High Court Bar President Salahuddin Ahmed in which he asked the court to set up a commission to investigate whether the audio clip is authentic or not.
In the audio clip leaked in November last year, the former CJP was heard allegedly instructing an unidentified person to sentence former premier Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz, and keep them in prison till general elections 2018.
The former chief justice had termed the clip as “fabricated” and contrary to fact.
During the hearing, Justice Minallah remarked that the whereabouts of the original audio clip was not known. To which, the petitioner replied that he was not aware of it either.
“We request that an independent commission be formed to inquire into the matter,” the petitioner prayed. The IHC CJ remarked that the matter was related to a pending appeal and those who had appealed have not demanded an inquiry. Minallah also told the petitioner that in his petition, “it is alleged that the benches of this court were formed under pressure.” Advocate Salahuddin said that this allegation was not in his petition but was made in the Rana Shamim affidavit case.
At this IHC CJ questioned whether there was any evidence that the court was compromised and the bench was made under pressure. “When you say that there should be an inquiry, it will include the judges in the bench,” Minallah maintained.
The petitioner further prayed that the main appeal in his petition was related to the inquiry of Saqib Nisar’s alleged audio clip and it did not state anywhere that he was talking to a judge on the other side. However, Salahuddin mentioned that other references were added to explain the context of the matter.
“This is not a time for us to call anyone guilty or innocent. It will be premature,” he said, adding that the inquiry would reveal the truth.
The petitioner further stated that Journalist Ahmad Noorani’s report on ex-CJ’s audio clip on Fact Focus mentioned that the leaked clip was not edited.
To this, the judge remarked that a lot of things come up on the internet and tomorrow more petitions may be filed pertaining to the audio, asking for their inquiries.
“Neither the report of the forensic agency you are now referring to nor the report obtained from the internet can be relied upon,” the judge said.
Subsequently, the court asked the AGP and the PBC to propose names of foreign authorised forensic agencies to conduct an analysis of the leaked clip.
The judge also directed the petitioner to provide the audio clip and adjourned the hearing till January 28.