Army Act Applies to Specific Types of People: CJP Bandial

Army Act Applies to Specific Types of People: CJP Bandial

Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial has said that only a specified type of person is covered under the Army Act of 1952.

The Supreme Court (SC) made the statement as it ordered Attorney General of Pakistan (AGP) Usman Mansoor Awan to seek government guidance over the applicability of the army act before adjourning the hearing on petitions challenging military trials till Friday morning.

The case was being heard by a six-member bench presided over by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial and made up of Justices Ijazul Ahsan, Yahya Afridi, Munib Akhtar, Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi, and Ayesha A. Malik.

The government announced its decision to hold military court trials for those found guilty of damaging and attacking military installations following the violent riots that broke out across the nation on May 9.

Imran Khan, the chairman of the PTI, former chief judge Jawwad S. Khawaja, legal expert Aitzaz Ahsan, and five representatives of civil society, including Karamat Ali, the executive director of Piler, asked the Supreme Court to declare the military trials "unconstitutional" in light of this ruling.

CJP Bandial rejected the government's proposal to set up a full court to consider the numerous petitions contesting the trial of civilians in military tribunals at the hearing on Tuesday, calling the idea "impossible."

In response to a demand from the government made through Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Mansoor Usman Awan, he stated that "all the judges were consulted when the bench was first formed, and the bench was formed based on the available judges."

The CJP also expressed his happiness that individuals who were detained were permitted to speak with their relatives, something he had repeatedly emphasized during earlier hearings.

Everyone agrees that the May 9 events were serious, but citizens cannot be subjected to any legal proceedings that violate the Constitution, he added.

He then reiterated that as long as the case is under hearing, all facilities should be given to the detained persons.