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SC rejects govt appeal, allows Ayyan to travel abroad

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ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday allowed  model Ayyan Ali to travel abroad after rejecting the Ministry of Interior’s appeal filed against the SHC order to remove her name from the Exit Control List (ECL).

A three-member bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, upheld the verdict of the Sindh High Court, directing the authorities concerned to remove the name of Ayan Ali from the ECL. On January 19, accepting the plea of Ayan Ali, SHC Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto issued directives to the authorities concerned to remove her name from the ECL. However, accepting the Federation plea, he suspended his order for 10 days, which sought time to challenge the High Court’s verdict before the apex court.

Earlier, hearing the case of Ayyan Ali, the SHC’s Chief Justice, Sajjad Ali Shah, appointed Justice Phulpoto as a referee judge to decide the super model’s petition after one of the judges on a division bench rejected her plea.

The federal government, however, challenging the SHC’s verdict in the matter had requested the apex court to reject the decision on the grounds that granting permission to the accused was out of the jurisdiction of the high court under Article 199 (1) of the Constitution. Deputy Attorney General Sajid Ilyas Bhatti submitted that any person whose name had been placed on the no-fly list could only seek permission for travelling abroad from the court in which his or her case was being tried instead of the High Court.

He contended that Ayan Ali’s name was placed on the ECL on a request of the Punjab Home Department (in the murder case of Customs Officer Ejaz Mehmood). Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar however, asked from the DAG Bhatti as to how many murder suspects’ names had been put on the ECL previously, adding that the referee judge of the SHC had issued a plausible verdict in the matter.

Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar expressed dismay observing that a First Information Report (FIR) was lodged against Ayan Ali in June 2015 but investigation into the matter was yet to be concluded.

Supermodel Ayan Ali was apprehended by the Customs officials on March 14, 2015, on charges of money laundering after recovering $506,000 from her luggage at Islamabad’s Benazir Bhutto International Airport while she had reportedly boarded a flight to Dubai.

Later, she was granted bail in July last year after spending around four months in Rawalpindi’s Adiala

Article source: News Source

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