The Supreme Court on Thursday adjourned the hearing on Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan’s plea challenging the Islamabad High Court’s (IHC) decision in the Toshakhana case till the latter issues a verdict on the plea seeking the suspension of the sentence in the case, a private TV channel reported. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial heard the case as the IHC was hearing the former prime minister’s plea against the Toshakhana verdict. During the hearing, the CJP observed that the IHC hearing was still under way. “The high court is finding a solution in the matter. This is the beauty of our system. “Let the high court’s decision come. We will hear the plea [filed in the SC] after that,” he said and adjourned the hearing until the IHC’s decision. The SC also sought a report on the facilities being provided to Imran in jail. During the hearing, Khosa complained about a policeman’s presence during one of his meetings with Imran in jail, at which the CJP asked him “not to say anything that is not on record”. Earlier in the day, the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) took issue with the apex court’s acknowledgement of “procedural defects” in the Aug 5 conviction of PTI Chairman Imran Khan, saying that there should be no “interference” in matters pending before the subordinate judiciary. In its order issued after Wednesday’s hearing, the SC noted that the trial court called the respondents (Imran Khan side) a number of times. Since neither the petitioner nor any of his auhorised representatives were available, the trial court chose to commence hearing ex parte and awarded a three-year sentence to Imran. The SC observed that while recording his statement before the trial court under Section 342 of CrPC, Imran had expressed his intention of producing a defence witness, but the trial court on Aug 2 turned down the request, saying the witness was not relevant to the controversy. According to renowned constitutional expert and Supreme Court advocate Hafiz Ahsaan Ahmad Khokhar, the Supreme Court’s jurisdiction is defined by certain constitutional provisions, including Articles 184, 185, 186, 187, and 188 of the Constitution. The Supreme Court was established under Article 176 of the Pakistani Constitution. He continued by saying that only current disputes, particularly those involving high court rulings in criminal cases, needed to be decided by the Supreme Court in accordance with Article 185 of the Constitution. He also emphasized that there is no legal question that the relevant courts are free to make any final orders they see fit under the law while a criminal matter is pending before the Supreme Court against any interim orders, and in particular when there is no restraint order against any proceedings pending before a high court or trial court by the Supreme Court. If the order is made, the proceedings pending before the Supreme Court will then be deemed to have been terminated. A final order in the form of a conviction was issued by the trial court after the present appeal was filed. This order was later challenged by the former prime minister before the High Court, where the proceedings are still ongoing. He also explained that the issue pertaining to the current case before the Supreme Court is one of those issues where the orders that were earlier challenged in the Supreme Court have no relevance at the present time. He claimed that this is the reason the Supreme Court has refrained from issuing any such ruling regarding the ongoing procedures because, should these appeals be settled in their current form by any order, even one issued by the Supreme Court, There would be no legal advantage for either party, and the former Prime Minister’s conviction would still stand. He added that the Constitution does not grant the Supreme Court the authority to supervise the High Court or its subsidiary tribunals. He went on to say that this is the reason why the Supreme Court is delaying making a decision about cases that are still pending before him while it awaits the High Court’s final ruling, which will be reflected in the order sheet that was submitted in opposition to the trial court’s conviction before the High Court. He claimed that it would have been more appropriate from a legal standpoint to address the current issue of adjudication, and that instead of waiting for the high court’s decision, the matter of these appeals may have been decided by the Supreme Court, being on the grounds of non-maintainability and infructuous. He also claimed that the petitioner would have been permitted to withdraw and challenge such new order of the high court if they were unhappy with the conviction or the way the sentence was being suspended.