Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has ordered Punjab Chief Minister Hamza Shahbaz to probe security officials’ act of preventing a judge from entering the court during the PM’s pre-arrest bail hearing today (Saturday).
He issued these orders after Special Court (Central-I) judge Ijaz Hassan Awan had commented that his car had been barred entry into the court by a security guard earlier that day. Some other individuals were denied entry into the court premises.
The judge made these comments during the pre-arrest bail hearings of Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Shahbaz, in connection to a money laundering case of Rs16 billion.
During the proceedings, the judge narrated how he and his staff members were stopped and held at the main gate by security officials, expressing disappointment over this mismanagement.
The prime minister then took the stand and told the judge that he too had been stopped by security guards at the main gate, at which the judge expressed surprise. “Mr prime minister, you are the prime minister in or outside the courtroom,” he said, asking who will take administrative control if not the PM?
The judge continued, saying that it was PM Shehbaz’s responsibility to ensure that everything goes according to order and decide what course of action needs to be taken.
Prime Minister Shehbaz then instructed Chief Minister Hamza Shahbaz to look into the matter and find out why this had happened on court premises.
The judge also reprimanded Superintendent of Police (SP) Civil Lines, Safdar Raza Kazmi, for the behavior of the security officials and ordered him to detail the actions he planned to take regarding this.
The police official replied that while there had been some miscommunication and a lack of coordination. He assured the judge that the police has utmost respect for the court.