The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday sought a report from Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) director general, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and other relevant authorities over an alleged leaked audio call between former Prime Minister Imran Khan's wife Bushra Bibi and her lawyer Latif Khosa. The conversation featuring Bibi and her counsel Khosa was leaked on social media, Dawn reported.
Hearing the case, the IHC also called for reports from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and National Database Registration Authority (NADRA) after Justice Babar Sattar accepted Bibi's petition on Wednesday. Khosa had confirmed the authenticity of the audio call, in which Bibi is suggested to tell him that Imran's sisters were not happy with her for hiring him.
The application, filed in the IHC through Khosa, cited the principal secretary to the prime minister and secretaries of defence and interior as respondents. It stated the audio was broadcast on the media out of context. According to the plea, the PTA stated before the IHC that recordings of private conversations were prohibited.
What did the court say?
"The PEMRA (Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority) must tell [us] as to how private conversations between people are being aired on TV channels," said Justice Sattar, who also directed a forensic examination of the audio call.
Khosa emphasised the “privileged” nature of a conversation between a client and a lawyer, to which the judge humourously replied, "You must know that the big boss is listening to everything", leaving the courtroom in laughter. Justice Sattar inquired about the recorder of conversations, to which Khosa replied: “Everyone knows who records conversations.”
The judge commented that the court cannot run on assumptions, to which Khosa said that it was not a concern for only him, but all the lawyers of Pakistan. “How can the justice system function if a lawyer cannot speak to his client freely?” Khosa questioned.
What was in the audio call?
As per the report by Dawn, the clip seems to feature Bibi telling Khosa that she told her sisters-in-law that she would hand over all cases to Khosa, which were being delayed. She said that Imran’s sister had claimed that Khosa misbehaved with her.
The voice suggested to belong to Bibi also shared that Imran’s sisters were also not happy with her statement in which she expressed apprehension that the PTI chairman could be poisoned in jail. Khosa told Bibi during the call that he did not misbehave with the sisters and only told them that they should let him fight the case without interference.