Some hope for Hodaibiya case

This refers to the news report ‘NAB files review petition against Hudaibiya Paper Mills case judgment’ (January 15, 2018) It is pleasing to note from the media reports that after the protracted delay of over eight months, the Supreme Court has decided to hear the review petition filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) against the dismissal of its plea for reopening the 18-year-old Hudabiya Paper Mills case against the Sharif family. The earlier rejection of the NAB’s request for re-opening of the supposedly solid case had greatly disappointed the nation.
And even though the news of the Supreme Court’s willingness to hear the review petition has come as a pleasant surprise, the disappointment still lingers on because the NAB’s request for the formation of a larger bench to hear the review petition has been rejected, and it is the same old panel, which originally rejected reopening of the case, which will hear the review petition.
And the disappointment has been caused not only by the fact that the plea for the formation of a larger bench has been rejected but also on the delay of over eight months in agreeing to hear the petition. In the circumstances where the Supreme Court is taking up the cases relating to public interest almost on daily basis, the delay is a bit difficult to comprehend, which is about the mildest way of putting it.
And while I claim no expertise in legal matters, I feel that the arguments advanced by NAB in favour of the review petition were pretty strong and made one feel that the rejection of the earlier NAB appeal could not possibly be described as the soundest verdict in the legal history. I only hope that the nation is not in for another shock..

SYED RIAZUL HAKEEM HASHMI
Karachi

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