Pakistani PM holds rare meeting with Chief Justice

Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi held his first one-on-one meeting with Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar at the Supreme Court on Tuesday evening.

It was notable that the prime minister reportedly went to the Supreme Court in a private car without his protocol.

The rare meeting between the heads of two pillars of democracy comes in the wake of perceived tension between the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the judiciary since the dismissal of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and ongoing investigation.

The meeting, which lasted about two hours, was apparently aimed at diffusing the political temperature, especially against the backdrop of criticism of the judiciary by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and other relatives who are facing corruption charges in an accountability court.

Abbasi assured Nisar that all steps would be taken to achieve the vision of the chief justice with respect to free education, provision of quality and affordable health services, revamping of medical education, provision of clean drinking water, better sanitation, and environmental protection, according to a statement issued by the Supreme Court PRO after the meeting.

In return, the chief justice also assured that the “judiciary will continue to perform its constitutional duties independently, fairly, transparently, without fear or favour and strictly in accordance with the law”.

Chief Justice Nisar has been taking a lead role in resolving pressing issues faced by common man such as health, water, education and civic issues.

“The Prime Minister also highlighted the difficulties of the Federal Board of Revenue and the Tax Department on account of pendency of litigation involving revenue in different courts. The Chief Justice assured the Prime Minister that he will look into the matter and such litigation shall be fast-tracked,” said the statement.

Pakistani newspapers reported that both the dignitaries discussed matters relating to next general elections, delimitation and caretaker government. Media reports also claimed that the two exchanged views on government, administrative- and governance-related affairs, including various constitutional and legal matters.


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