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Government Seeks Private Counsel In Justice Qazi Faez Isa case

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A report published by The Express Tribune reveals that the government led by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is looking for “suitable private counsel” to represent it in the case against Justice Qazi Faez Isa.

A presidential reference seeks the removal of the Supreme Court judge and the government is in need of legal representation before a full court hearing at the apex court before 10 judges. But the government’s efforts have not met with much success in this regard.

The report reveals that senior and well-known lawyers appear reluctant to take up the task of representing the government. These include Makhdoom Ali Khan, Aitzaz Ahsan and Dr Abdul Basit. Meanwhile, former attorney-general Ashtar Ausaf Ali and the PTI’s own Ali Zafar have also shown a lack of interest in taking up the government’s case. Some names including that of Naeem Bukhari are still being considered, according to the report.

Furthermore, the report quoted a “senior law officer” as saying that the government’s legal team is sufficiently competent and that “there is no need to engage private counsel”. This source did allow, however, for the possibility that “both Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Anwar Mansoor Khan and Law Minister Farogh Naseem have been impleaded as a party by Justice Isa and, therefore, they may engage a private counsel for themselves.”

The report cites the support of superior bars for Justice Isa as a factor that helps dissuade the more prominent lawyers from taking up the case. The perception that the government’s case is backed by the country’s powerful establishment is also a factor which makes it less appealing to prominent legal minds.

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