Shehbaz Sharif’s administration gets mocked by the Pakistan Supreme Court over the Imran protest prosecutions.

Following the arrest of former prime minister Imran Khan on May 9 in connection with an alleged bribery case, Pakistan’s Supreme Court rejected the Shehbaz Sharif-led administration’s request to convene a “full court” to hear appeals contesting military court indictments of demonstrators accused of damaging army facilities.

Imran is one of many who has petitioned against such trials. “A full court cannot be made at this time. Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial presided over a six-member bench and stated that three justices had excused themselves from hearing the case and some judges were not present in the nation.

Two additional judges had recused themselves on the first day of the hearing, CJ Bandial noted. We were surprised when the government spoke with the judge and attended at the second hearing. The CJ stated that the bench was reduced from nine to six.

Aitzaz Ahsan, a legal expert, Imran, the leader of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), and others have criticized the government’s plans to trial the protestors in military courts as being unconstitutional.

The government argued that Article 245 of the Constitution required the military forces to defend Pakistan from “external aggression or threat of war” during the hearing on Tuesday. The administration also defended its decision and urged the court to dismiss all petitions.

The government declared that in order to deter future attacks, “our constitutional framework allows perpetrators of such vandalism and violence”—a reference to Imran and his party members—”to be tried under the Pakistan Army Act.”

The protection of citizens under the constitution, however, was emphasized by the top court. Military courts, which are closed to the public, conduct quick trials, don’t provide explanations for rulings, and don’t even record evidence.

The CJ stated that unnecessarily severe treatment of civilians was inappropriate. Military regulations, in contrast to regular laws, were extremely strict, he observed. He postponed the matter until Wednesday, however, after acknowledging the seriousness of the May 9 violence.

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