Federal Law Minister Farogh Naseem resigns
Law Minister Farogh Naseem has resigned and will fight Chief Of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s case tomorrow (Wednesday), federal ministers confirmed after an emergency meeting of the federal cabinet concluded on Tuesday.
Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed confirmed during a press conference that Naseem had tendered his resignation during the cabinet meeting.
“Prime Minister Imran Khan has accepted Naseem’s resignation,” he said.
Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Accountability Shahzad Akbar and Federal Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood were also holding the press conference with Rashid.
“Let me tell you that Farogh Naseem has resigned voluntarily,” said Akbar. “He will present himself before the court tomorrow with the attorney general and represent the government’s stance on General Bajwa’s extension,” he added.
Akbar said that Naseem had resigned as he could not argue the case as as the federal law minister.
Rashid rejected reports that any member of the federal cabinet had criticised Naseem in the meeting.
“The cabinet appreciated Naseem’s hard work and capabilities,” he said.
Akbar said that Naseem could once again take up the mantle of federal minister of law once the case ended.
Shafqat Mahmood said that a lot of issues came under discussion during the cabinet meeting including the observation of the apex court regarding General Bajwa’s extension.
He said that Article 243 of the constitution gave the prime minister the right to make decisions like extending the tenure of the army chief.
“Before making this decision, it was kept in mind that the region is witnessing extraordinary circumstances,” he said. “The notification was issued with the prime minister’s signature on August 19.”
Mahmood said that former army chief General (r) Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani was also given an extension by using Army Regulation 255.
He said that the apex court had observed during a hearing today that the word extension was not included in Army Regulation 255. He said that the cabinet had amended Army Regulation 255.
The federal minister said that the prime minister had taken the decision owing to General Bajwa’s achievements in securing peace from Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad till present.
Mahmood said that the situation in occupied Kashmir and at the Line of Control (LoC) was extraordinary.
“It was the first time that India attacked Pakistan after the 1971 war,” he said.