Lawyer Farogh Naseem. PHOTO: FILE
ISLAMABAD: Law Minister Dr Farogh Naseem appears to depend on a piece of land with Prime Minister Imran Khan putting his assistant in parliamentary affairs, Dr. Babar Awan, in the seat of legislative affairs on ministries and divisions in the National Assembly and Senate.
It has been learned that instead of relying on the law minister, the prime minister sought advice on various legal matters from other experts over the past few months.
PTI lawyer Ali Zafar was asked to prepare an initial draft regulation for the construction industry.
Likewise, Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Khalid Javed Khan was asked to assist in drafting regulations on hoarding.
Now the prime minister has included Dr Babar and his special assistant on accountability Mirza Shahzad Akbar in the committee that is finalizing the draft amendment to the national accountability law.
Source told The Express Tribune that all stakeholders seek a second opinion on matters in which advice is given by the ministry of law.
Even the AGP office’s opinion applies in some critical legal matters. Some cabinet members also consulted with the AGP office for legal advice.
All litigation matters are now supervised by AGP and on his first day, he explained that no interference would be tolerated.
The PTI-led government was unable to develop consensus to implement legislation in parliament and most legislative work was carried out through regulations.
Although the law minister announced, the federal government did not submit a presidential referral to Peshawar High Court Chief Justice, Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth because of his assessment of the treason case against former military ruler Pervez Musharraf.
A senior minister revealed that the government had decided not to submit a reference to the CJ PHC.
Likewise, one section in the government alleged that the law minister could not maintain good relations with the superior bar after submitting the president’s reference to SC judge Judge Qazi Faez Isa.
Despite the passage of one year, the president’s reference to SC judges has not yet been decided. The government does not have suitable legal counsel to represent it in the case of Justice Isa.
Earlier, it was decided that Dr Naseem would represent the government in the case after the resignation of former AGP Anwar Mansoor Khan.
However, at the date of the last hearing, the full court indicated that Dr. Naseem had to submit his resignation as minister before appealing to the federal government case.
There are also unconfirmed reports that when the full court will continue the trial of Judge Isa’s case, the law minister may step down to appear on behalf of the government.
The trial of Judge Isa’s case has now been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
However, after Dr Babar’s induction in the cabinet, many believed that the law minister lost his position.
Supporters Dr. Naseem said that he worked hard and the legal ministry had decided 60,649 cases in 20 months.
They further pointed out that the law minister drafted regulations on smuggling through routes that were not announced after working day and night.
Naseem was also present at the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) headquarters when Prime Minister Imran Khan visited there on Thursday. His supporters believe that his presence at ISI headquarters reflects that the law minister is a vital government official.
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