The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Friday decided not to close the long-running case filed by late air chief marshal Asghar Khan, rejecting the Federal Investigation Agency’s recommendation to close the files for “lack of evidence”.
A two-member bench headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar resumed hearing the case earlier today regarding non-implementation of its October 19, 2012 judgment. The late air chief marshal had petitioned the apex court in 1996 alleging that two senior army officers and then-president Ghulam Ishaq Khan had doled out Rs140 million among several politicians to rig the 1990 polls against Benazir Bhutto.
Rejecting the FIA’s recommendation to close the case because of “not enough evidence to continue investigating”, the chief justice remarked that the court would not let Asghar Khan’s efforts go to waste.
“FIA is [backing out] when it’s time for implementation. We will summon a reply from FIA, and also from the cabinet,” Justice Nisar remarked, as the bench ordered further investigation into the case.
“If FIA doesn’t have the powers [to investigate the case], then another institution can continue the probe,” the top judge observed, adding that the late air chief marshal’s family was not taken into confidence by the FIA regarding closure of the case.
The legal heirs of late Asghar Khan on Thursday had rejected the FIA’s recommendation and requested the Supreme Court not to close the case. In a joint response filed by his family, including his wife and son Ali Asghar Khan, the heirs had pleaded the apex court that the case be taken to its logical conclusion.