Mar 6

Legal notices

Posted on Friday, March 6, 2015 in Legal notice

LAHORE MARCH 6, 2015: The PCB has sent legal notices to ex-cricketer Sarfraz Nawaz, ex-Chairmen PCB Ijaz Butt and Khalid Mahmood, ex-cricketer Aamir Sohail and PMLQ politician Kamil Ali asking them to apologise to the PCB and Executive Committee chairman Najam Sethi for defaming and slandering them with lies. It would be binding on these individuals to reply within fourteen days of receipt of legal notices otherwise proceedings of defamation will be started in the court of law. In case of non reply, defamation suit for 10 crores will be instituted against each one.

The defamation notice says that the above persons have maliciously and falsely accused Najam Sethi of working with Moin Khan to fix matches and bet on them.

It may be noted that all five people to whom notices have been issued have been engaged in a deliberate and motivated conspiracy to undermine the PCB and the Pak Team and various PCB officials.

Click on the links below for PDF of legal notices sent to these individuals:

Jan 30

Najam Sethi sues Transparency International Pakistan

Posted on Friday, January 30, 2015 in Legal notice

Click to Download PDF

USMAN  G.  RASHID
Of Lincoln’s Inn, Barrister-at-Law
LL.M. King’s College London
LL.B. (Hons.) London
Accredited Mediator by CEDR, London
Master Trainer by CEDR, London
Advocate of the High Courts of Pakistan

1 Turner Road, Lahore, Pakistan
Phones +92 – 42 – 372 31795
+92 – 42 – 372 36174
Fax +92 – 42 – 373 62626
Cells 0333 420 0935
0323 420 0935
[email protected]

27 January 2015

Mr. Sohail Muzaffar
Chairman
Transparency International – Pakistan
5-C, 2nd Floor
Khayaban-e-Ittehad
Phase VII
Defence Housing Authority
Karachi

Legal Notice

  1. This legal notice is issued on the express instructions of our Client Mr. Najam Aziz Sethi (the “Client”) who is the most reputed independent journalist in Pakistan acknowledged worldwide and is the only recipient of three top international awards for journalistic courage and professionalism in a decade in South Asia.  Our Client is among the first journalists in Pakistan to have received ‘Hilal-e-Pakistan’ by the Government of Pakistan in year 2011.  We issue this legal notice, for and on behalf of our Client, in response to the false, ill founded, unsubstantiated and malicious remarks and insinuations made in your letter dated 16 January 2015 addressed to The Honourable President of Pakistan (the “Publication”) and circulated to many including Chairman NAB, Federal Tax Ombudsman, Registrar of Supreme Court of Pakistan and electronic media.  Nevertheless copy of the Publication is attached herewith as Annex A.
  2. You have long been spearheading a campaign of vilification of our Client.  The last time you were checked by our Client, through a legal Notice dated 07 July 2014 issued under our hand, you tried taking refuge behind the stereotype of discharging professional obligations and the so called distinction between ‘criticism and defamation’.  Although our Client was convinced that you were not discharging your professional obligations while writing letter to Chairman FBR Tariq Bajwa that was later circulated as a news item / article in Business Recorder on 03 July 2014 titled “Recovery of evaded tax from Sethi: TI-Pakistan Praises FBR Chairman”.  Equally fictitious was your assertion of doing criticism and not defamation, yet our Client showed restraint and did not take the matter to its necessary conclusion.  However, your mudslinging is going on.
  3. The Publication is, as usual, irresponsible, unsubstantiated and libellous in nature constituting defamation.  Despite being a senior man tasked with nabbing corruption, as your claim in the Publication, not only you appeared novice in the field law but even the basic facts forming basis of the Publication were found alarmingly incorrect.  You were absolutely ill informed about legal provisions and their interplay.  Nonetheless you masterly used the incorrect and distorted information and cunningly drafted the Publication maligning our Client, whereas the matter pertained not to Najam Sethi but separate and distinct assesses, with distinct National Tax Numbers, filing their own Income Tax Returns on Regular basis, who are legally responsible for their own deeds.  Yet you wilfully chose to mention our Client’s name in a bid to lower his reputation and undermine his credibility.  The Publication was so ill founded that it had a belittling effect on you and Transparency International Pakistan.  The Publication is maliciously motivated so is vehemently denied.
  4. Since the Publication mala fidely alleges tax evasion by our Client, his wife, Mrs. Maimanat Mohsin (“Mrs. Sethi”) and children so it would not be out of place to mention here that Mr. & Mrs. Sethi are amongst the largest tax payers of Pakistan.  They pay more tax than any other husband-wife team of journalists in Pakistan and probably more than dozens of members of Parliament.  As a matter of fact, they jointly paid personal income tax of Rs.46.3 million (Rupees four Crores and Sixty Three lacs only) from year 2009 to 2013.  In addition, their publishing companies also paid tax of Rs.19.9 million (approximately rupees 2 Crores only) in the last five years.  All their assets have duly been declared to FBR.
  5. Yet trumped-up allegations were levelled by former Federal Tax Ombudsman Mr. Shoaib Suddle (“Mr. Suddle”) using ITOs for victimising our Client, who severely criticized Mr. Suddle for his biased, partial and partisan role during the proceedings and/or inquiry of one man commission constituted by the Honourable Supreme Court to probe into the allegations levelled on Arsalan Iftikhar by Malik Riaz Hussain.  Mr. Suddle, who took strong exception to it and got annoyed.  In a bid to avenge himself, he abused his office and started a campaign to malign our Client and his family.
  6. Mr. Suddle, while abusing his official position as Federal Tax Ombudsman, pressurised the Deputy Commissioner Inland Revenue (DCIR), Audit Circle Zone-II to issue illegal notices to our Client regarding property of his wife situated in the USA.  Mrs. Sethi is separate tax assessee, with distinct National Tax Number, filing her Income Tax Returns on Regular basis, who purchased that property and got it registered on her name along with her husband with a special power of attorney being given to their son to handle the affairs of property.  The property was shown in her wealth statement along with the source of investment within prescribed time.
  7. Under the influence of Mr. Suddle, the DCIR amended the assessment of our Client illegally on his whims rather than law by assessing the property in his hands that investment for property was made by our Client in spite of explanation and evidence to contrary that it was made by Mrs. Sethi.
  8. Being aggrieved by the treatment of DCIR, our Client preferred an appeal before Commissioner Appeals under Section 127 of Income Tax Ordinance 2001.  While the appeal was still pending, the department initiated recovery proceedings unlawfully.  So our Client moved an application to CIR praying that either recovery proceedings be stayed or case be decided expeditiously.  No matter how reasonable the request was, the CIR refused to entertain either of the prayers vide order No.2239 dated 16 July 2013 manifestly under the influence of Mr. Suddle.
  9. Nevertheless our Client fought his case by filing an application before Appellate Tribunal Inland Revenue, where the department was restrained to take coercive measures against our Client vide order No. M.A. (Stay) No. 829/LB/2013 dated 22 July 2013.
  10. Meanwhile an application was sent by our Client to Chairman FBR and Member Legal for change of jurisdiction to any other Commissioner Appeal.  No specific Commissioner was suggested.  Rather it was requested that case may be transferred to any Commissioner whose workload is not heavy so that our Client’s case may be disposed of on earlier basis.
  11. Our Client’s case was decided by CIR (Appeals-I) on points of law in his favour.  The CIR had not at any stage been instrumental in transferring appeal to his Zone as it was transferred by FBR itself.  The Commissioner (Appeals) did not yield to any pressure from and decided the case purely on points of law.
  12. Thereafter the tax department issued notices to Mrs. Sethi and their two children, which were challenged before the Federal Tax Ombudsman on basis of mal administration on 16.07.2013.  In the meanwhile the second appeal by the Department was filed against the decision of Commissioner Appeals before Appellate Tribunal Inland Revenue was decided in favour of our Client and the very basis of issuing notices Mrs. Sethi and their two children stood cancelled.  Yet the FTO gave its findings against Mrs. Sethi and their two children on 18.04.2014, who filed the Review Petition No.17/2014 that too did not find favour with him and was dismissed on 06.11.2014.
  13. Mrs. Sethi thereafter filed a representation before the President of Pakistan under section 14(1) of the Federal Ombudsman Institutional Reforms Act 2013.
  14. Now if you recall the Publication, you would notice that all the references, quotations and citations you gave were of Federal Tax Ombudsman Ordinance 2000 and not Federal Ombudsman Institutional Reforms Act 2013 under which the representation was filed and admitted by the office of the President.  How lamentable!!!!!!!
  15. For your information the Federal Ombudsman Institutional Reforms Act 2013, under which representation before the President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan was made, was published in the Gazette of Pakistan on 20 March 2013, Section 13 deals with the powers given to the Federal Tax Ombudsman to review his orders, which is reproduced;Section 13 Review:  (1) The Ombudsman shall have the power to review any findings, recommendations, order or decision on a review petition made by an aggrieved party within thirty days of the findings, recommendations, order or decision.
  16. Section 14 of the said Act allows any person or party aggrieved by a decision, order, findings or recommendations of an Ombudsman may file representation to the President within thirty days of the decision, order, findings or recommendations , which is reproduced;Section 14. Representation:  (1) Any person or party aggrieved by a decision, order, findings or recommendations of an Ombudsman may file representation to the President within thirty days of the decision, order, findings or recommendations.

    (4) The representation shall be processed in the office of the President by a person who had been or is qualified to be a judge of the Supreme Court or has been Wafaqi Mohtasib or Federal Tax Ombudsman.
  17. It is evident from the in the above given law that the Mrs. Sethi and their Children utilized their legal rights in approaching the Honourable President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan under section 14 of the said Act for relief against the illegal order passed by the FTO.  Needless to reiterate that your contention regarding the representation being time barred is also false and based on ignorance of facts and law.  A watch dog and so unaware, what a waste of resource!!!!  A senior man like you getting his basic facts wrong and raising his whole argument thereon, what a shame!!!!!!!
  18. It is important to emphasise that Representation by the Office of the President was accepted on merits and all the allegations levelled in the Publication are absolutely preposterous, absurd, ridiculous and libellous in character.  Each of these allegations mentioned above has been shown to be false, baseless and bogus by reference to facts and record.
  19. Last time you alleged “tax evasion” against our Client, whereas the case of “tax evasion” had not yet been decided by the tribunal.  As a matter of law, till the decision is announced no “tax evasion” can be established.  Later our Client won that legal battle.  Now our Client maintains that the above was not a mistake but was done with a design.  You intentionally chose to damage the reputation of our Client by wrongly maligning his family members.  The very subject of the Publication reflects your pre-conceived nefarious notions where you, the self proclaimed judge, termed the Representations ‘illegal’.  Then instead of referring parties by their names, you chose to cite name of our Client.  Thus it is libellous Publication maliciously motivated against our Client to injure and lower him in the estimation of right and fair-minded people of society, for which you are solely liable.
  20. Your action apart from damaging the credibility of our Client and his family members, also defames and ridicules the highest Honouarble Office of the Head of the State of Pakistan nationally and internationally.  Your Publication, which has proven to be utterly false and ill founded, did cast so serious aspersions on the integrity of the Office of the President and the senior officers, qualified to be a judge of the Supreme Court or has been Wafaqi Mohtasib or Federal Tax Ombudsman, working therein that Presidential Office had to issue a Press Release to clarify its position.  The amount of uncalled for damage you caused to the Highest Office in Pakistan cannot be measured.
  21. Be that as it may, the office of the Honourable President of Pakistan while hearing representations under Federal Ombudsman Institutional Reforms Act 2013 is performing a quasi judicial function.  The Publication has the effect of influencing the President in discharge of its quasi judicial functions and amounts to contempt.  The very depth of the legal arguments and use of extensive case law clearly reflects that you became a party, an instrument of FTO, and were trying to advance FTO’s arguments in garb of your Publication to get favourable order from the last forum.
  22. Had it being a bon fide effort to ensure the rule and supremacy of law, you would not have circulated the Publication, but ostensibly the purpose was to influence the last forum of appeal and conduct a pre-emptive media trail of our Client to thwart the course of justice so that the Presidency, like FBR officials and FTO in past, is pressurised not to give any relief as per law.  This was a concentrated effort to marginalise our Client.
  23. So our Client has taken serious notice of the utterly false and scandalous Publication that render a distorted and fictitious travesty of facts about our Client with the malicious purpose to defame and disgrace him.  The foregoing Publication was repeated without obtaining any confirmation or verification from any relevant or affected quarters including our Client or Mrs. Sethi.  The falsity of the allegations made in the Publication, its vicious slant against our Client and repetition of such allegations to the point of revulsion reveals a concerted effort under a malicious plan to malign our Client unjustly, without cause and with the sole purpose of defaming him.
  24. The wrongs committed through Publication by yourself, for which according to law you are directly responsible, constitute both civil as well as criminal wrongs.  The act of intentionally communicating false allegations that are derogatory and defamatory in effect constitutes the offence of defamation, which has in fact been committed by the Publication in respect of our Client.  The baseless allegations made in the Publication have injured his reputation, lowered him in the eyes of others and exposed him to ridicule and dislike.  For causing such harm, injury and pain, our Client has a right to be fully compensated by you as the originator of the Publication.  Although a financial award can never adequately compensate the injury and loss of reputation suffered by our Client on account of the defamatory Publication, however, you are hereby notified that our Client claims an amount of Rs.50/- Billion as compensation to partly alleviate his loss and injury caused solely by the illegal actions of yourself.
  25. Without prejudice to the foregoing, in order to acquit yourself of guilt and responsibility for the foregoing illegal actions constituting defamation, libel and slander, you are hereby granted an opportunity by this legal notice to publish a contradiction and an apology for the malicious, fallacious and scandalous Publication herein challenged with the same prominence under headlines with which such Publication had been carried.  Such a contradiction and apology must appear within seven days of the receipt of the instant legal notice failing which our Client may commence, simultaneously or successively, legal actions for civil and criminal remedies against yourself and other persons involved in the commission of such wrongs.
  26. In this case, take this as a notice for initiation of action for defamation under section 8 of the Defamation Ordinance 2002.  Please take note that the contents of the Publication constitute admissions and can be used as evidence against you.

Yours truly,

Usman G. Rashid

P.S.
An original of this legal notice is retained in our chambers for future reference and reliance.

Copy to:

  1. Najam Sethi
  2. Chairman NAB
  3. Federal Tax Ombudsman
  4. Registrar of Supreme Court of Pakistan

Click to Download PDF


Suddle should not be head of Arsalaan Commission, AKB, 3rd Sept 2012

Suddle exposed, 19th Nov 2012

Feb 19

Legal Notice to Imran Khan

Posted on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 in Legal notice

17 February 2014

Mr. Imran Ahmed Khan Niazi
2 Zaman Park
Lahore

Legal Notice

Dear Sir,

  1. This legal notice is issued on the instructions of our Client Mr. Najam Aziz Sethi (the “Client”) who is a senior political analyst, publisher and the Editor-in-Chief of a Lahore based political weekly called ‘The Friday Times’ in the following terms:
  2. The notice is served upon you in response to the contents of baseless, malicious and defamatory remarks made via (i) tweet on your Twitter Account on 04 February 2014 (ii) in the press conference you held within the precincts of the Honourable Supreme Court on 11 February 2014 (iii) during Geo News talk show ‘Capital Talk’ with Mr. Hamid Mir on the eve of 11 February 2014 and (iv) a talk show ‘Zer e Behas’ on Samaa TV with host Mr. Arif Nizami on 17 February 2014.  Henceforth all the four statements / remarks shall collectively be referred to as the “Publications” and the transcripts of the relevant extracts are attached herewith as Annex A/1 to A/4.
  3. The Publications are allegedly based upon the so-called “information” received from unidentified and unacknowledged sources and has utterly been unsubstantiated.  Our Client has taken serious notice of these completely false and scandalous Publications that render a distorted and fictitious travesty of facts about our Client with the malicious purpose to defame and disgrace him.  Hence all the baseless, fictitious and malicious allegations made in the Publications against our Client are vehemently denied.
  4. Our Client is a very well read scholar holding a Masters degree from Cambridge University, UK.  In 2011, Clare College Cambridge University, UK nominated him as Alumni of 2011 and conferred the Eric Lane Fellowship on him.  He is a dignified member of journalist community commanding great respect for his integrity, courage and professionalism.  He is founder editor in chief of Daily Times and Daily Aajkal.  In 1999 Newsweek International lauded our Client’s political weekly as a ‘crusading paper’.
  5. Our Client is the only journalist in the South Asia who has been recipient of three top international awards for journalist courage and professionalism in a decade.  In 1999 he was awarded ‘International Press Freedom Award’ by Committee to Protect Journalist New York and ‘Courage in Journalism Award’ by Amnesty International.  In 2010, he was honoured with the ‘Golden Pen Award’ by the World Association of Newspapers Paris, which is the apex body of global media.  Our Client was the first journalist in Pakistan who was decorated with ‘Hilal-e-Pakistan’ in 2011.  In 1996 – 1997, our Client was appointed Advisor for Political Affairs & Accountability, with the rank of a minister, in the caretaker federal cabinet of Pakistan.  He served as national consensus Caretaker Chief Minister of Punjab from March-May 2013.  Our Client is the Chairman of the Pakistan Publishers and Booksellers Association and the Secretary-General of the Lahore International Book Fair Trust.
  6. The reasons for campaign of vilification, malicious and scandalous allegations levelled in the Publications are given hereunder:
    6.1  Since our Client appears as a permanent guest analyst in a current-affairs programme on Geo News called “Aapas Ki Baat, Najam Sethi Kay Sath”, which is one of the most watched shows and is liked because of our Client’s honest and impartial analysis in his candid and original manner.  Thus our Client is acknowledged as the leading authoritative, credible and independent voice of journalism in Pakistan, according to the Credibility Index published online.
    6.2  Our Client being a public spirited citizen and analyst has been rendering his duty to raise public awareness about current geo political national and international situation through his independent political critique.  During the discharge of his journalistic duties you, your party, your policies and your decisions have often been subject of our Client’s frank analysis done in his usual businesslike manner in the same way he evaluates all other political parties and figures.  However the fact is that neither you nor your followers could ever digest our Client’s professional criticism positively.  Resultantly a campaign of vilification to malign our Client and his views has long been going on in print and social media.
    6.3  Then frustratingly unbearable for you is the satirical column ‘IM the Dim’ that is published in ‘The Friday Times’ under the editorship of our Client.  Not only is this column received very well in Pakistan, it is popular in the UK among your English friends, who often embarrass you, as you have told our Client requesting him to stop publishing the same.  Upon his consistent denials, hence, these Publications.
  1. The contents of the aforesaid Publications are utterly preposterous and misinformed.  The Publications imply that our Client was made Caretaker Chief Minister of Punjab to rig elections in favour of PML (N).  Whereas in March 2013, our Client’s name was presented for the Caretaker Chief Minister of Punjab by the PPP and its allies and was accepted by PML (N) and its opposition allies on basis of our Client’s unmatched credibility, independence, neutrality, integrity and high esteem, which he holds in Pakistan and in the International community.  It is a matter of record that neither you nor your party raised any objection on the nomination of our Client.  Indeed, you personally welcomed our Client to your house in Islamabad and expressed support for his neutral administration.
  2. The Publications make a further allegation that our Client was rewarded, in return of his alleged service to PML (N), with the post of Chairman Pakistan Cricket Board.  It would perhaps be surprising for you to know that our Client occupies this office on honorary basis, without a single paisa in remuneration, so much so that he uses his own car and driver for going to PCB office and meetings in Lahore and Islamabad.
  3. The Publications are allegedly based upon so called information gathered in an unidentified and unsubstantiated manner.  The malicious allegation of causing ’35 Punctures’ is vague in its form and content. It is fictitiously suggesting, without any proof whatsoever, that our Client had some role in PTI’s defeat in last general elections.  The fallacy in your allegation is revealed by the mere fact that no evidence whatsoever of the alleged so called conversation between our Client and top leadership of PML (N) has ever been produced by you despite being repeatedly demanded by our Client.  The said allegation represents a gross distortion of the record that is laced with falsehood and rancour to malign our Client on account of foregoing reasons.
  4. Needless to reiterate, all the allegations levelled in the Publications about our Client are absolutely preposterous, absurd, ridiculous and libellous in character.  Each of these allegations mentioned above has been shown to be false, baseless and bogus by reference to facts and record.
  5. So our Client has taken serious notice of the utterly false and scandalous Publications that render a distorted and fictitious travesty of facts about our Client with the malicious purpose to defame and disgrace him.  The foregoing Publications were repeated without obtaining any confirmation or verification from any relevant or affected quarters including our Client.  The falsity of the allegations made in the Publications, their vicious slant against our Client and the repetition of such allegations to the point of revulsion reveals a concerted effort under a malicious plan to malign our Client unjustly, without cause and with the sole purpose of defaming him.
  6. The contents of the Publications are extremely insinuating, disparaging and defamatory attacking on the reputation of our Client.  Not only the words and language used are defamatory in their natural and ordinary meaning but even the ordinary reasonable implications thereof are also defamatory.  Thus these are libellous Publications maliciously motivated against our Client to injure and lower him in the estimation of right and fair-minded people of society, for which you are solely liable.
  7. The wrongs committed through Publications by yourself, for which according to law you are directly responsible, constitute both civil as well as criminal wrongs.  The act of intentionally communicating false allegations that are derogatory and defamatory in effect constitutes the offence of defamation, which has in fact been committed by the Publications in respect of our Client.  The baseless allegations made in the Publications have injured his reputation, lowered him in the eyes of others and exposed him to ridicule and dislike.  For causing such harm, injury and pain, our Client has a right to be fully compensated by yourself as the originator of the Publications.  Although a financial award can never adequately compensate the injury and loss of reputation suffered by our Client on account of the defamatory Publication, however, you are hereby notified that our Client claims an amount of Rs.100/- crores as compensation to partly alleviate his loss and injury caused solely by the illegal actions of yourself.
  8. Without prejudice to the foregoing, in order to acquit yourself of guilt and responsibility for the foregoing illegal actions constituting defamation, libel and slander, you are hereby granted an opportunity by this legal notice to present cogent, relevant, admissible and non-hearsay evidence of the alleged conversation between our Client and PML (N) leadership establishing the veracity, if any, of the allegation of ‘35 punctures’ within three days of the receipt of the instant legal notice failing which the sham nature of your allegations made in the Publications shall be deemed established.  In that case, you may publish a contradiction and an apology for the malicious, fallacious and scandalous Publications herein challenged with the same prominence under headlines with which such Publications had been carried.  Such a contradiction and apology must appear within seven days of the receipt of the instant legal notice failing which our Client may commence, simultaneously or successively, legal actions for civil and criminal remedies against yourself and other persons involved in the commission of such wrongs.
  9. In this case, take this as a notice for initiation of action for defamation under section 8 of the Defamation Ordinance 2002.  Please take note that the contents of the Publications constitute admissions and can be used as evidence against you.

Yours truly,

 

Usman G. Rashid

P. S. 1:

An original of this notice is retained in our chambers for future reference and reliance.

P. S. 2:

To ensure delivery, original legal notices are also being despatched on your following addresses:

  1. House No.18-D/1, Gulberg III, Lahore
  2. Street No.84, House No.2, Sector G 6/4, Islamabad
  3. Residence of Mr. Imran Khan, Banni Gala, Islamabad

Copy to: Our Client

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