The question of a new Chief Justice of Pakistan

The question of a new Chief Justice of Pakistan is referred to a special commission with representatives from judiciary, legislative, and Executive branches

By Khalid Hashmani, McLean, Virginia, USA

An article in today’s Dawn provides glimpse of points of view by PPP and PML-N on the restoration of deposed judges as they try to win the American support. The newspaper claims that these arguments are being made by the representatives of the two political parties in meetings with various US officials. It seems that PPP‘s main point is that independence of judiciary in Pakistan can be achieved without meeting exactly what every lawyer or political leader wants. However, the PML-N’s point of view appears to be that restoration of Chaudhry Iftikhar’s reinstatement as the chief justice is a mandatory requirement for independent judiciary. 

In my view, a reasonable compromise could be that all justices including Justice Chaudhry are reinstated as justices/judges of their respective courts and the question of a new Chief Justice of Pakistan is referred to a special commission with representatives from judiciary, legislative, and Executive branches.  The commission should recommend two names, which should be voted by the National Assembly and all four provincial assemblies. I believe that for a strong democracy to flourish in
Pakistan, we have move away from focusing on specific individuals be it Justice Chaudhry, Mr. Nawaz Sharif, or Mr. Zardari. By the same token, no one should impose Mr. Zardari to become the President of Pakistan. He would be acceptable only if elected in a fair election as per the current Elections law.

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2 thoughts on “The question of a new Chief Justice of Pakistan”

  1. I honestly believe that both PPP and PML(n) are struggling for power and not nation building which is the need of the hour. They are pursuing their own agenda and vendetta. In other words, the scene is ripe to get as much as they can.

  2. .. Have we lost all good judgment? Just as Mr. Nawaz Sharif was gaining respect there are talks from his side of giving constitutional protection to NRO. Is this what the lawyers and the whole nation has been fighting for? It means that we wanted the restoration of judges but not the restoration of justice and fair play. Constitutionalizing the NRO would clip the wings of independent judiciary and would express clearly the mindset of the present and future governments, as it comprises both the big parties, that they do not want any justice and fair play in future too. The whole struggle of the nation seems to be going vain. For the first time in history of our country a ray of hope had emerged that now honesty and wisdom shall prevail and we will be able to breakthrough the vicious cycle of corruption and dishonesty and run this country according to the principles of justice, fair play and impartiality as expressed in Quaid-i-Azam’s Historical Address of 11th August 1947, to the First Constitutional Assembly of Pakistan.

    Actually the only weak point of Mr. Musharraf which spoiled his case legally was that he could not manage to constitutionalize his PCO 2 from the Parliament. And on part of Parliament, it was in accordance with the principles of justice and fair play that the unconstitutional PCO 2 was not given protection by the two-third of the parliament. But what has gone wrong now that the Parliament seems to be willing to indemnify the NRO through constitution. Is there an example in the constitutional states of the world of such a corrupt proceed? Have the lawyers of this country forgotten the Constitution and law. Or was it something personal against Musharraf. If his PCO 2 was wrong and did not deserve indemnity from the Parliament, and for that reason he had to “go Musharraf go”. Then why this NRO is not “go Zardari/Sharif go”. Is it just because they are popular leaders, and because we ourselves have elected them, we have lost rationality and impartiality? Does this make them above law? Is there any such provision in any constitutional law that shows indemnity and cover for popular leaders? I am sure law is same for everyone rich or poor, powerful or weak, popular or unpopular.

    See what Article 63. of the Constitition says, “A person shall be disqualified from being elected, and from being, a member of the Parliament, if—1(h) he has been convicted by a court of competent jurisdiction on the charge of corrupt practice, moral turpitude or misuse of power or authority ….”

    Ex-convicts are not allowed to contest elections or remain as member parliament according to our constitution, nor shall they be allowed to roam freely as heroes distorting the role model image of the innocent minds. And this won’t happen if Mr. Iftikhar Chaudhry is restored before constitutionalizing the NRO – to which Mr. Chaudhry has already shown his disapproval when he was still in office. PCO was meant to grant rule and authority unconstitutionally to an un-elected General whereas NRO is meant to unconstitutionally hand over the rule of country to elected or would-be bye-elected crooks. So they are one and the same thing. Both NRO and PCO intend to deliver the power to rule this country to the people who are not constitutionally eligible for it. Most of the corruption/murder etc cases were not initiated by Musharraf government but by their own independent democratic governments against each other establishing the credibility of the cases.

    For God sake lawyers, keep up to your new mark. I have listened you people saying that the Law of Necessity has been buried forever. What is NRO? Isn’t it rerun of Law of Necessity? Are we taking back the ex-convicts as our direct or indirect rulers just because they are popular and can get elected, and that conditions of the country are not well and we think that only this bunch of criminals can save us? If popularity could be the justification for illegal and unconstitutional rulers then every Martial Law administrator was justified when he overtook the charge. Believe me things are divinely controlled and Allah Almighty never bless dishonesty, or even ignorance. Honesty is always rewarded. It is the law of nature that prevails everywhere in this world, and thereafter. All that is needed is that we open our eyes, and our minds. Both eyes and minds are the greatest blessings of Allah Almighty to enjoy and explore His creations and thus bow before Him in gratitude and submission. But by shutting our eyes we show our thanklessness to God and by shutting our minds we show Him that we did not like Hs greatest endowment that He made us Ashraf-ul-Makhlukaat and that we want to revert to the level of animals or even stones. Allah always withdraws his blessings from the thankless and gives each what he is up to. His blessings are for those who follow His teachings. Dishonesty never pays, so do shortcuts. Covering up NRO would never pay us off. Now that when everything have seemed to be straightening out, we once again seem to be heading from where we had started. You can make a fool of people but not the One who manages things.

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