ICMD, May 4, 2019:

Singer Meesha Shafi on Saturday filed an application with the session judge expressing no confidence in the additional district judge, who is hearing the defamation case filed by Ali Zafar.

Shafi's legal team has alleged that Additional District Judge Shakeel Ahmad is exhibiting prejudice during the hearing and requested that the case, consequently, be transferred to another court.

Judge Ahmad "has shown a clear and obvious bias in favour of the plaintiff which is apparent from the mode and manner in which he has so far conducted the proceedings", the petition reads according to a report.

While the singer's legal team claimed that this bias was apparent since the hearings for the case started approximately six months ago, his bias "has been confirmed after the serious impropriety displayed by him on 27th April 2019 during the cross examination of the first witness of the plaintiff by counsels for the defendant".

"The defendant does not have any confidence that the learned judge will be able to impartially and fairly proceeding in the case and hence desires to transfer her above-mentioned case to any other court of competent jurisdiction."

The petition noted that the judge had "advised the witnesses not to give long answers as he may contradict himself or he may prejudice his own stance".

The judge also did not allow in court records an objection by Zafar's team and a protest by Shafi's team and further refused to let a paper detailing witnesses' position in the studio into the evidence.

It was the same judge who had imposed a fine worth Rs10,000 for the "non-appearance" of Shafi's team, which had requested an adjournment as a relative of one of the team's members had passed away.

Also, in one of the court statements, the judge, instead of giving legal reasons, wrote that "the allegation levelled by one of them, the defendant, is bizarre to say the least”