The Supreme Court on Monday gave the National Accountability Bureau 24 hours to implement the NRO verdict, directing the acting NAB chairman to reopen all corruption cases, including those against Asif Ali Zardari in Swiss courts, by today (Tuesday) and file a report with the court.

“Take all the petitions and all the cases from ‘A’ to ‘Z’ and revive them by [today] … the law has to take its course,” said Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry while heading a six-member bench hearing a revived corruption reference against FIA Additional Director General of the Economic Crimes Wing Ahmed Riaz Sheikh – who was convicted on corruption charges in 2001. He was later reinstated under the NRO in 2008.

The bench also served show-cause notices on the interior secretary, the additional interior secretary, the FIA director general, the Establishment Division secretary, the Establishment Division joint secretary and the NAB chairman and the acting chairman for failing to implement the NRO verdict. The bench directed the officials to file their replies to the notices by Tuesday.

The chief justice said judgements delivered by the SC were “binding on all”.

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Earlier, the acting chairman’s absence from court irked the bench, and he was subsequently summoned. The court then directed him to file a report on the implementation of the NRO verdict. The bench grilled him over the progress made during the course of the hearing.

The court directed the NAB chairman to file a reply today on why cases closed under the NRO had not yet been reopened. The court also warned the acting NAB chairman that he would have to go to jail in case he failed to restore cases to their pre-NRO position.

Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramdey said, “Even if somebody has become a king, he, too, is not exempted [from the NRO verdict].”

The court directed the FIA director general to immediately rescind orders on the promotion of Ahmed Riaz Sheikh – who was serving as a deputy director at the time of his conviction.

The hearing was later adjourned until today.