ISLAMABAD: The federal government on Saturday issued a notification announcing the setting up of a commission of inquiry to probe sexual harassment allegations leveled against former National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chief Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal and others.
The notification said that the commission will investigate into allegations of “sexual offenses including assault, harassment, insult and humiliation, abuse, misconduct, abuse and abuse of authority” by the complainant against the alleged perpetrators.
The Commission will investigate and perform its functions in accordance with the following Terms of Reference (TORS), namely:
Determining the integrity of the process of administration of justice, the protection of the individual, the right to a fair trial, the absolute violence to the dignity of the individual and the violation, if any, of the equality of the citizen.
After investigation, to determine whether criminal liability, if any, has been committed by any or all persons or any other person or holder of public office by any of the offenses defined in the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860 (Act).
To investigate allegations that Gul was induced by some authorities to provide video/audio material and later leaked it on a private TV channel for ulterior motives and designs.
After investigation, to determine whether disciplinary proceedings, if any, are attracted by some of the persons complained of or by any other person by any act thereof.
To fix responsibility on any person or holder of public office, aiding or abetting by any act in the commission of any offence(s) or contravention of laws, if any, prescribed.
To make clear and specific recommendations in the light of the findings of the investigation for taking any necessary legal action by any agency, department or any other person.
The decision to form the commission comes after Gul accused the former NAB chief of sexual harassment. During his appearance in Geo News’ program ‘Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Ke Saath’ on 7 July, he also revealed that PTI chief Imran Khan used his videos to blackmail the opposition and close their NAB cases.
She shared that Justice (Retd) Iqbal threatened her saying ‘I can destroy your life within a minute’.
Following his allegations, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) called for the removal of the former NAB president along with other accused officers of the accountability watchdog.
“It is a matter of grave concern that these allegations were leveled by a woman who had approached Justice (Retd) Iqbal in her capacity as COIED president – a position in which she was in a position to defend Tayyaba Gul’s testimony and to act as a judge.” Were responsible for securing the right to seek justice for the missing relatives,” read a statement from the HRCP.