ISLAMABAD - Eminent lawyer-turned-politician and PPP stalwart Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan has replaced Dr Babar Awan to represent the Federation in the presidential reference to reopen Zulfikar Ali Bhutto case filed with the apex court.

A well-placed source late Sunday night informed APP that the decision had been taken in principle keeping in view the fact that Dr Babar Awan’s licence had been suspended.

This would be the second high-profile case for Aitzaz Ahsan who is already representing Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani in the contempt of court case in the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Office-bearers of People’s Lawyer Forum have welcomed the decision by President Asif Ali Zardari to appoint Aitzaz Ahsan as Federation’s lead lawyer in ZAB case.

In a statement, the PLF office-bearers hoped that being a veteran PPP leader and a close aide of former PPP Chairman Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Shaheed, Aitzaz would better present facts in the apex court in ZAB case.

A Barrister-at-Law by profession, he is a Senior Advocate at the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Possessing a literary penchant, he has also authored the book “The Indus Saga and the Making of Pakistan” and its Urdu translation, “Sindh Sagar Aur Qyam-e-Pakistan” which present the cultural history of Pakistan.

He also made legal history by having defended two Prime Ministers in the court of law. Having previously fought cases in defence of Benazir Bhutto in 2001 he took up a case in defence of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.