Islamabad: Pakistan's Supreme Court today adjourned contempt proceedings against a real estate tycoon at the centre of a corruption scandal involving Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry's son after the businessman sought time to hire a lawyer.

A three-judge bench led by Justice Mian Shakirullah Jan adjourned the matter till June 21 when tycoon Malik Riaz Hussain told the court he needed time to engage a counsel.

The bench rejected a petition's demand for Hussain's name to be included in the Exit Control List so that he could not travel out of the country, saying his behaviour did not indicate that he would "run away".

The bench barred Hussain from speaking to the media until the contempt of court case is decided.

The businessman left the Supreme Court complex without speaking to journalists.

The bench yesterday initiated suo motu contempt proceedings against Hussain after he levelled several allegations against the Chief Justice.

The bench issued him a show cause notice and directed him to personally appear in court today.

In a short order, the bench said Hussain's remarks at a news conference on Tuesday had ridiculed, scandalised, insulted and maligned the judiciary.

The remarks were an attempt to spread hatred against judges and to undermine the authority of judiciary, the bench said.

The bench clubbed the suo motu case with a petition filed by a lawyer named Ashraf Gujjar, who asked the apex court to launch contempt of court proceedings against the tycoon.

An unscheduled meeting of the judges of the apex court On Wednesday took notice of allegations levelled against Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry by the tycoon.

(Agencies)

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