Unlike his reputation of taking everything lightly and looking at everyone (except at My Lords, of course) with a pinch of humour and satire, Naeem Bukhari after Friday’s verdict by the Supreme Court on Panamagate graft case, has emerged as the top legal aide to Imran Khan. Leading from the front and appearing on behalf of his client, Chairman of PTI Imran Khan, Mr Bukhari has proven his credentials by convincing the hon’ble judges of the Supreme Court that the House of Sharifs was built on the foundations of corruption and expanded by the sources of ill-gotten wealth. During the past one-and-a half years or so, one kept seeing a number of ups and downs in the Panamagraft case but Mr Bukhari religiously and steadfastly followed the case and exposed what he believed the Sharif family’s corruption from London to Dubai and Doha to Lahore. He also countered each of their arguments successfully defending his point of view.
Friday turned out to be a day of Naeem Bukhari and one could see after the verdict PTI leaders, workers and lawyers greeting and congratulating him on the historic judgment. “It is because of the hard work and strong arguments of Mr Bukhari and his team that all the five judges of the Supreme Court unanimously announced anti-Nawaz Sharif decision,” said a top leader of the PTI. When asked if it was not because of Babar Awan’s legal acumen, he said Babar Awan joined the team quite late, the major work was done by Naeem Bukhari.” Since Bukhari is not such a man as runs after point scoring or goes announcing it is he who headed Imran’s legal team, many of Imran Khan’s fans think otherwise, said PTI leader.
However, the party chairman Imran Khan acknowledging Naeem Bukhari’s contribution in ensuring the case meets its legal and logical end, sent his vice chairman and a towering leader of the PTI Shah Mahmood Qureshi to Bukhari’s house with the latter’s favourite “coffee fudge cake” to show how much he appreciated Naeem Bukhari’s work. “Chairman highly appreciates the way you prepared and contested the case and represented him before the highest forum of justice,” said Shah Mahmood Qureshi while handing Bukhari the cake from Capital’s popular bakery Kitchen Cuisine.
Naeem Bukhari in his usual light and humble way thanked the Vice Chairman of the PTI and repeated his oft-quoted sentence, “in case of failure, it is the client who loses but in case of success, it is the lawyer who succeeds,” Naeem was quoted by a PTI worker present on the occasion. According to him, Mr Qureshi and other PTI leaders present there, burst into laughter at Naeem Bukhari’s wit.