ISLAMABAD, May 26 — Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani whowas convicted by the Supreme Court of contempt for refusing topursue graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari last month,will not appeal against his conviction, his defense lawyer said onSaturday. The prime minister, who had been given only a token sentence ofless than a minute on April 26, had a month time to file an appealagainst the apex court’s verdict, but Gilani has dropped the ideaof challenging the order, defense lawyer Barrister Aitzaz Ahsansaid. The decision came days after Speaker of the National Assembly orlower house of Parliament ruled that Prime Minister Gilani cannotbe disqualified. Speaker Fahmida Mirza rejected a letter from theSupreme Court’s registrar to send a reference to the country’sElection Commission to seek action against the Prime Minister. Information Minister Qamar-uz-Zaman Kaira said the speaker’s rulingcannot be challenged in any court.
The Pakistani cabinet had earlier decided to appeal againstGilani’s conviction and his defense lawyer had even prepared anappeal before the expiry of a 30-day deadline on May 26. Butleadership of the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has decidednot to file the appeal, defense lawyer said. Legal experts are of the opinion that the government has decided tomake the issue political rather than fighting the case legally.They argued that the Supreme Court’s conviction will remain intactand the apex court can in future deliver a clear decision todisqualify the prime minister. Former Law Minister and senior legal expert S. M.
Zafar said theprime minister did not file appeal as he had fears the SupremeCourt may disqualify him if he files appeal. He said petitions could now be filed in the courts to seek court’sintervention to stop the prime minister from functioning. He also said that there is no legal protection to the ruling of theparliamentary speaker and it could be challenged in the court. Another senior lawyer Babar Sattar said conviction of the primeminister will remain effective after his decision not to challengehis conviction. Bose Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones
He said that the Supreme Court’s verdict of conviction is now finaland Gilani will remain a convicted Prime minister. He said theprime minister’s nomination papers for taking part in futureelections could be rejected as he is now a convicted person. Gilani’s lawyer said that an appeal will not be filed against theconviction of the prime minister. He told the advocate on recordthat he “can go home” as an appeal would not be filed. Monster Beats By Dre Studio Headphones
A senior lawyer, AK Dogar, has meanwhile filed a petition in theSupreme Court, asking it to stop Gilani from holding the primeminister’s office as he was disqualified as per the court’sverdict. The opposition has been calling for Gilani’s resignation since aseven-member bench headed by Justice Nasirul Mulk gave the judgmentand sentenced him till the rising of the court. Gilani rejectedcalls for resignation from the post of prime minister. The main opposition Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) and smallopposition groups have joined hands to urge Prime Minister Gilanito quit as he has lost his moral authority to continue in the post. The court convicted Gilani of contempt for failing to act onrepeated orders to reopen cases of alleged money laundering againstZardari in Switzerland. Sony MDR In Ear Headphones
Gilani and the government had refused toact against Zardari, saying the president enjoyed complete immunityin Pakistan and abroad.