Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry.—File Photo

KARACHI: Pakistan’s top judge on Saturday said that the Supreme Court will not retreat even an inch from the Constitution in its dispensation of justice, DawnNews reported.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, speaking to a gathering of lawyers at the Karachi Bar, said that the judiciary was taking all decisions in accordance with the Constitution of Pakistan.

The chief justice said that the apex court’s order of July 31, 2012 had put an end to unconstitutional steps that were being taken.

Justice Iftikhar was referring to a July court order on the worsening law and order situation in restive Balochistan province.

The oil and gas rich province is rife with ethnic tensions, sectarian violence and also has a separatist insurgent movement ongoing.

“Enforced disappearances, target killings, kidnapping for ransom and sectarian related killings have become order of the day,” the court had noted in its order July 31 order. The order fixed responsibility on the federal as well as the provincial governments "for the enforcement of the Constitution in Balochistan.”

A composite statement was submitted on behalf of the federal as well as Balochistan governments assuring the court that steps would be taken to enforce Article 9 (security of life and property) of the Constitution in the province, while the chief of the Frontier Corps (FC), the paramilitary force deployed in the province and accused of rights’ abuses by Baloch nationalist leaders, was also asked to sign the document.

The chief justice’s comments come after former Balochistan chief minister and Balochistan National Party president Sardar Akhtar Jan Mengal, returning to the country after three years of self-imposed exile in London, described enforced disappearances as the real cause of the current unrest in the province.

The Baloch leader, in a six-point charter presented in the SC on Thursday, called for an immediate end to military operations in Balochistan, the recovery and fair trial of all ‘missing persons’, the abolishment of “proxy death squads”, and an end to interference from intelligence agencies in the freedom and functioning of political parties in the province.

Reference to lawyers’ movement

Speaking to the lawyers on Saturday, Chief Justice Iftikhar also said that lawyers were deeply affected by the events of May 12 and April 9.

The chief justice was referring to the mayhem in Karachi on May 12, 2007 when at least 48 people were shot dead and dozens of vehicles set ablaze as the chief justice was detained at the airport and city life was paralysed.

In another incident the same year on April 9, several lawyers were killed and their chambers burnt by the police during the lawyers’ movement against the chief justice’s suspension by former president Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf.

The chief justice added that a strong Bar further boosts the strength of a country’s judiciary.

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Comments are closed.

Comments (11)

Ali
September 29, 2012 4:12 pm
What is the use of having supreme court, if it is not able to uphold the constitution while making its judgment, and iyield to political pressure, for what ever reason, from those in power! Political stalwarts like Faisal Raza Abidi or Zardari should try to get rid of supreme court, if they think CJ does not have moral authority, and bear the consequences. CJ is hired for a reason, regardless, the function is to apply the constitution & law to make judgments, othewise there is no reason to maintain Supreme court, spend millions, public money.
Ajaya K Dutt
September 29, 2012 12:10 pm
CJ has issued the order. Now ISI is going to comply.
Agha Ata (USA)
September 29, 2012 12:26 pm
I see a vision of CLEAN Pakistan in the dreamy eyes of our Chief Justice!
M. Asghar
September 29, 2012 12:37 pm
The Apex Court's constitutional action is solidifying the county's institutions by enforcing the prinple of accountability.
Asad Raza
September 29, 2012 8:19 pm
Which constitution he is talking about. In Pakistan more than a dozen constitution have been promulgated by persons outside parliament and courts have always endorsed all of them.
NINO
September 29, 2012 6:50 pm
NASAH : Is therte any person in your eyes who is honest in Pakistan? Take yourself as example, are you honest enough to pass adverse remarks about others? Kindly look into yourself and that might imprve matters in our country. I have been working on myself to do my job honestly and I leave most judgements to Allah.
Asghar Mayo
September 29, 2012 2:43 pm
SC is perhaps the last hope of redeeming. May it be true.
jay
September 29, 2012 12:02 pm
Isn't this PCO judge's constitutional responsibility to make sure that the lower court system is functioning as it is suppose to?? Please take care of that first and then people would be interested in listening to your lectures. It is easy for this PCO judge to pass judgement's on other people's performance, but he fails to see the rot in his own area of responsibility. Two faced justice.
NASAH (USA)
September 29, 2012 11:47 am
"SC not to retreat ‘even an inch’ from Constitution" -- except in cases of judges' sons and daughters?
omar qureshi
September 29, 2012 1:05 pm
institutions like the supreme court are only active under civilian administration where they are allowed some flexibility. Under military governments they only legalize whatever the dictator does. But people forget very soon.
Hello1
September 29, 2012 5:40 pm
That’s all very fine in high profile cases and all the fanfare attached to them. However, it’s a different story altogether in the lower courts. I don’t think they have even heard the word”constitution” or “fundamental rights”. Ask anybody who has had experience of going to a civil judge’s court.
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