Justice Shaukat Siddiqui clarifies Lt Gen Asim Munir wasn’t behind his sacking

Fakhar Durrani
Sunday, Nov 27, 2022

ISLAMABAD: Justice (retired) Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui claimed that newly appointed Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt Gen Asim Munir was not behind his sacking. In fact, former chief justices Mian Saqib Nisar, Asif Saeed Khosa and the then DG-C ISI Major General Faiz Hameed were behind this scheme.

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) ex-justice claims that he was removed on October 11, 2018, whereas Lt Gen Asim Munir joined Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) on October 25, 2018.

Talking to The News, Justice (retired) Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui said he has already clarified on his social networking website twitter that it was the then Major General Faiz Hameed not Lt Gen Asim Munir who was behind his sacking. According to Justice (retired) Siddiqui, the excerpt of Shuja Nawaz’s book ‘The Battle for Pakistan’ is incorrect as he already had named General Faiz Hameed in his petition before the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

“It is unfortunate that a person of his calibre (Shuja Nawaz) and repute has spread a biased and motivated account, which is factually incorrect,” said Justice (retired) Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui on his social networking website.

Reacting to this controversy, Shuja Nawaz shared an excerpt of this book ‘The Battle for Pakistan.’ A reading of the excerpt shows that Shuja Nawaz was commenting on the general perception of General Munir within the military.

“His subordinates maintain that his strictness has a cult status among the troops he has managed,” the excerpt reads. Shuja Nawaz, in his book, then goes on to cite the example of Justice Siddiqui’s sacking as an example of General Munir’s perceived style of action.

Justice (retired) Siddiqui has rebutted the facts mentioned in Shuja Nawaz’s book and said, “Mr Shuja Nawaz, while writing about Lt Gen Aasim Munir, gave an incorrect statement that as DG ISI, officer was behind my sacking. I was de-notified on 11th October; he assumed his office on 25th Oct 2018. I have already pointed out the characters.”

Justice (retired) Siddiqui told this scribe that the facts mentioned in Shuja Nawaz book are incorrect. For the reference, he shared the copy of his petition with this correspondent that he submitted before the Supreme Court of Pakistan. The relevant excerpt of his petition says, “Major General Faiz Hameed DG-C, ISI also approached the petitioner at his residence on June 29, 2018, and then again on July 19, 2018. Major General Faiz Hameed on his first visit dated June 29, 2018, apologised to the petitioner regarding the conduct of his subordinate Brig Irfan Ramay and further suggested that some guidance may be provided to protect the prestige of ISI by modifying orders in the above-mentioned writ petition. On this point, the petitioner explained that he could not go beyond his order passed and the same must be repeated and implemented unless set aside or modified by the honorable Supreme Court. Seeing the reluctance and firm attitude of the petitioner, Major General Faiz Hameed agreed and assured that the ISI would proceed in accordance with law. At this juncture, he requested other persons to leave the room as he intended to talk in private.”

Justice (retired) Siddiqui further claimed in his petition, “Thereafter, Major General Faiz Hameed inquired about the procedure of hearing appeals in the High Court on judgment and conviction by the NAB court of Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif etc. For the petitioner it was quite strange that how DG-C ISI is so certain about the conviction of the accused but petitioner showed restraint about showing any kind of expression. However, the petitioner responded when you are fully aware of legal procedure and certain about the outcome of trial then why are you asking from me? On this he straightaway asked the petitioner what would be the petitioner’s view in case the appeals came before petitioner? The petitioner replied that cases are to be decided as per the oath administered to every judge and purely on merits instead of any other consideration and in case matters come before petitioner, it would be decided purely on merit as petitioner is answerable to Allah. In response, comments passed by the gentleman were shocking and highly deplorable. Words uttered by him were to this effect: “Is tarah to hamari 2 saal ki mehnat zaaya ho jay gi.”