Monday, July 31, 2017

Pakistan SC’s landmark verdict

The verdict of Pakistan Supreme Court that disqualified Pak Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for not showing the salary he was allegedly getting as Chairman of United Arab Emirates at the time of filing his nomination in the Panama Paper Case is path breaking. There is also allegation against him and his two sons and daughter Maryam of laundering money and concealing offshore properties. They were also debarred from the electoral politics of Pakistan. Maryam was considered to be the heir apparent of former PM Sharif. But as she was declared unfit for the post of PM by the SC, Sharif chose his brother and Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif as his successor. He will take the oath of office as PM of Pakistan after being elected to the National Assembly in the next two months. Pakistan has gone ahead of India in its fight against corruption. It is regrettable that no action has been taken against the names of some of the Indian celebrities, politician, businessmen and others whose names figured in Panama papers as yet. Pak has set a record against corruption. It is for other countries to follow in Panama paper revelations. Pak judiciary has taken the strong view of the corrupt practices by the politician who is at the helm of affairs. The investigation must be started into the allegation against the celebrities, politicians, and businessmen whose names appeared in Panama papers for having bank deposits in foreign countries and other offshore properties. A probe team needs to be immediately constituted to go into the foreign deposits and offshore properties of all Indians from different fields of activities whose names figured in Panama papers. Keeping the Panama papers’ names of Indians under the carpet will give a message that Narendra-Modi-led NDA govt. too has also compromised with corruption as the previous UPA govt. India being the largest democracy of the world, it needs to set its record straight with regards to corruption. The apex court of Pakistan has shown the world how strict it is against corruption. Corruption corrupts society. And it is as dangerous as cancer. It also spreads as fast as cancer and if it is left unchecked and unaddressed, it would devour everything. So, the govt. of India is also urgently required to investigate into the offshore property against of all those Indians whose names have appeared in Panama papers. Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been disqualified by SC after it found that the former failed to disclose his ‘unwithdrawn’ salary as chairman of a UAE based firm at the time of filing his nomination. The top court five-judge larger bench headed by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa unanimously announced the verdict, disqualifying Sharif as it delivered the Panamagate verdict.The apex court has ordered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to file a reference against the accused in an accountability court in six weeks, directing for the trial to be concluded within six months. It is the second time in Pakistan’s 70-year history that the Supreme Court has disqualified a sitting prime minister. In 2012 then prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani was disqualified over contempt of court charges for refusing to reopen a corruption case against the sitting president Asif Ali Zardari.Also no Pakistani prime minister has ever completed a full five-year elected term. Most tenures have been cut short by military coups. While serving as the country’s Prime Minister in 1993, Sharif was sacked by the then-president over graft allegations, while in 1999 he was ousted in a military coup. The verdict of Pak Supreme Court is path breaking. It is to be followed by the neighbouring countries also. They must also proceed against corruption cases without any loss of time.

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