PTI’s Imran Shah receives dressing-down in SC, ordered to deposit Rs3m in dams fund
Islamabad, Sep 01: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar on Saturday ordered Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Imran Ali Shah to deposit Rs3 million in the dams fund created by the Supreme Court, saying he wanted to teach the MPA a memorable lesson for assaulting a citizen.
A video of Shah slapping citizen Dawood Chauhan had gone viral last month, sparking outrage on social media.
The PTI leadership had taken notice of the incident soon after and issued a show-cause notice to the MPA-elect. Shah was later fined Rs 500,000, but allowed to remain a member of the party.
The CJP had taken the PTI lawmaker to task separately over the episode after taking suo motu notice of the incident in August.
Shah, who was present for the hearing today, was asked to step forward before the CJP directly addressed him, saying: “What were you thinking when you slapped a citizen? One does not even hit an animal like you did.”
“This is an unforgivable offence and [we] will not let this go,” the top judge warned. He asked Shah how he could resort to such violence being a representative of the people.
“I will step outside and maybe you should slap me and show me how you did it,” the CJP challenged Shah, who repeatedly sought forgiveness and said he was ashamed of the incident.
Unconvinced, Justice Nisar retorted: “What ‘sorry’? I [once] hit a servant with a belt in childhood, and my father hit me twice to teach me a lesson [to never dare to do it again].”
He also reminded the lawmaker that there could be no “compensation for [hurting the] honour” of his victim.
When asked by the CJP, Shah said he had slapped the man three or four times.
“You ought to be slapped four times in public as well in the same way,” the CJP retorted.
Turning to Chauhan, the victim of the episode, the CJP asked why he had agreed to forgive Shah. Chauhan responded saying that the governor-designate himself had visited his house in person to settle the matter.
The CJP then asked court officials to arrange equipment to play the video clip of Shah slapping Chauhan. The hearing was suspended temporarily.
After the break, the CJP asked Shah what treatment should be meted out to him. The MPA, who was also chided by the CJP for standing with his hands in his pockets, said he had been angered by the abuse allegedly uttered against his parents by Chauhan.
“Think of Dawood Chauhan’s age; you ought to be ashamed of yourself,” Justice Nisar responded.
The CJP warned that the court could convict Shah under Article 62(1)(f) of the Constitution, him being a lawmaker.
Upon the judge’s instruction, Shah then publicly apologised to Chauhan for assaulting him. He also hugged the latter.
Chauhan also informed the court that he was accused of receiving money in exchange for settling the matter, while his son alleged that members of PTI’s social media team had run a campaign against his family.
Chauhan’s son maintained that Shah should not remain a public representative, at the very least.
At this, the CJP said that he wanted to set an example through this incident, adding: “I want to teach such people a lesson, who think of themselves as pharaohs.”
Chauhan then said he was forgiving Shah in the name of God, but that the PTI leader should be barred from travelling in a large (4×4) vehicle so that “he can travel like us”.
Shah said he would comply with this demand if the CJP so orders.
However, the CJP concluded the matter by ordering the MPA to deposit Rs3m into the dams fund.