Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman, Imran Khan, has urged the high-powered judicial commission, which was set up to probe the audio leaks that involve judges, to investigate “powerful and unknown elements” who are responsible for wiretapping.
Earlier, the federal government formed a three-member judicial commission to investigate the audio leaks. The commission, which is led by Justice Qazi Faez Isa and includes Justice Naeem Akhtar Afghan and Justice Aamer Farooq, was created under “Section 3 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, 2017”.
In a statement posted on his Twitter account, Khan said that the terms of reference (TORs) set out by the federal government suffer from a deliberate omission. “They fail to take into account the issue that who is behind unlawful and unconstitutional surveillance of PM office and sitting judges of the Supreme Court.”
Khan has demanded that the commission should be empowered to investigate those responsible for tapping and recording telephone conversations of citizens, including high-ranking public officials.
He added that the wiretapping was a serious breach of privacy guaranteed under Article 14 of the Constitution. “Not only should those who illegally retrieve data through unlawful phone tapping and surveillance be held accountable, but those who leak the information on social media after fabrication and tampering of different phone calls should also be held accountable.”
Khan said that some of the recent leaked calls were made over a secure phone line in the Prime Minister’s Office. “Nevertheless, they were unlawfully tapped and fabricated or tampered with.”
“Seemingly, the elements behind such audacious tapping operate in a manner outside the command and even knowledge of the PM of Pakistan. Who are these actors who are above the law and outside the command of even the prime minister of the country, and who resort to such illegal surveillance with impunity? Such elements need to be identified by the Commission,” Khan demanded.