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Justice Faez Isa challenges SC verdict requiring verification of offshore properties

Justice Qazi Faez Isa on Monday submitted a petition to review the Supreme Court’s June 19 order, which had directed the tax authorities to verify the offshore properties owned by his family members.

According to the review petition filed by senior counsel, Munir A Malik, Justice Isa requested the apex court to reexamine the decision and revoke the interim order, as well as to stop the implementation of the ruling until a decision on the review application was made.

It added that the SC judge was waiting for a detailed ruling but that had been delayed.

The judge said he was filing the review petition before the deadline to submit one expired. “However, the petitioner reserves his rights to submit further, additional and other grounds once the detailed reasons are issued.”

Justice Isa further underlined how the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) had initiated proceedings against his family before a detailed ruling was issued. The interim order lacks an explanation on facts and jurisdiction, he added.

He also lamented not being heard in many instances.

It is pertinent to note that the Supreme Court Bar Association and Sindh High Court Bar Association have also challenged the order and filed the petitions before the Supreme Court.

Last month, the SC had dismissed a presidential reference against Justice Isa in the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) and accepted his petition seeking the reference’s dismissal.

The judges had unanimously declared the proceedings of SJC and its show-cause notice as abate. Seven judges of the 10-member full bench, however, referred the matter to the FBR, asking it to initiate tax proceedings against Justice Isa’s wife and two children.

It was stated that the reasons of the order would be issued later.

The SJC had earlier initiated proceedings over Justice Isa’s alleged non-disclosure in wealth returns of three London properties acquired on lease in the name of his wife and children between 2011 and 2015.

Justice Isa, in his petition challenging the reference, had requested that the apex court declare the Asset Recovery Unit (ARU) formed by the government to look into the properties had no legal standing and, therefore, its actions with regard to the reference against him and his family illegal.

The petition had contended that no proper research was ever conducted and the property details gathered were simply the product of online surveillance.


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