… On Monday, during the ongoing hearings on challenges to certain parts of the 18th Amendment, Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry posed the question: “Should we accept if tomorrow parliament declares secularism, and not Islam, as the state polity?” That the question was asked in a rhetorical way was relatively clear: several judges indicated that such a move was even beyond contemplation. That is a troubling position.
Leave aside the remote possibility of secularism being constitutionally approved as the governing ethos of the Pakistani state. The question is really, should the Supreme Court appropriate for itself the responsibility of determining under what system the Pakistani people want to live, as expressed by their elected representatives? …
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