ISLAMABAD - A five-member larger bench, headed by the chief justice of Pakistan, will hear the petitions for the disqualification of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif over offshore companies of his two sons and daughter.

The bench that also comprises Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, Justice Amir Hani Muslim, Justice Ijaz Ahsan and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain shall resume hearing of Panama leaks on November 1, a day before Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s planned lockdown of Islamabad.

The petitions have been filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan, Jamaat-e-Islami Amir Sirajul Haq, Awami Muslim League Chairman Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Tariq Asad advocate and Barrister Zafarullah.

A three-member bench on 20th October had dismissed Zafarullah’s petition to restrain PTI from locking down the federal capital.

PTI had sought disqualification of PM Nawaz Sharif, Capt (r) Safdar and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar. However, JI had not named the PM as a respondent in the petition, but had requested the SC to direct the investigating agencies to probe the Panama leaks.

Sheikh Rashid has urged the apex court to form a commission as it had been done in the case of Memogate scam.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had welcomed “with an open heart” the Supreme Court’s proceedings in the Panama issue.

Ever since the revelation of Panama Papers has surfaced, Imran Khan is adamant that Nawaz Sharif should resign and produce his properties and assets for accountability.

In pursuance of the court directives, the notices have been issued to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, National Accountability Bureau (NAB) through its chairman, Federation of Pakistan through Secretary Law, Interior Secretary, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) through its Chairman, Maryam Nawaz Sharif, Hussain Nawaz Sharif, Hassan Nawaz Sharif, Capt (r) Muhammad Safdar and Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

The respondents have been directed to bring their original CNICs.