Pak SC citing Indian apex court verdicts; Indian experts divided

Citing Indian Supreme Court verdicts by the Pakistan's apex court while disqualifying Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has evoked mixed reactions from legal fraternity here.

While legal experts noted that it was normal for courts across the world to refer to judgements of foreign courts they differed on the relevance of the reference made in Pakistan Supreme Court's verdict to the Indian apex court's judgements of 2007-- one in the case of Uttar Pradesh Assembly and another Haryana Assembly, both relating to disqualification of legislators by the Speaker.

Some senior lawyers and Constitutional experts noted that the Supreme Court verdicts referred to by the Pakistan court related to disqualification of MPs in connection with anti-defection and not contempt.

However, some others opined that the relevance of the judgements is to be decided by Pakistan Supreme Court which had found them applicable.

The two judgements of Indian SC cited by Pakistan apex court has "nothing to do with the situation in Pakistan", according to senior advocate Rajeev Dhawan.

He said that under the Indian anti-defection law, the court can only question the Speaker's decision to disqualify an elected member and cannot disqualify him/her on its own.

"They (court) cannot directly disqualify any elected representative," Dhawan stated. 

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