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Newly appointed Attorney General Munir A. Malik—Online Photo
Newly appointed Attorney General Munir A. Malik—Online Photo

ISLAMABAD: Newly appointed Attorney General Munir A. Malik assured the Supreme Court on Monday that he would never defend any state action that might be in conflict with his endeavour to uphold citizens’ fundamental rights.

Mr Malik made the commitment when Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry warmly welcomed him on his first appearance in Courtroom No. 1 as attorney general and said the court expected a lot from a person of his calibre to show the same commitment as demonstrated by him in the past to the rule of law and supremacy of the constitution.

The attorney general said his endeavour would be to uphold the fundamental rights of citizens and would never defend any action of the state if it was in conflict with this goal.

“Article 184(3) of the constitution (which provides the apex court the authority to enforce the fundamental rights), is not an adversarial jurisdiction of the Supreme Court,” he said, adding that he was truly humbled by the gesture shown by the court.

“I am not certain whether I was the best man for the job,” Mr Malik said, but assured the court of his commitment to the rule of law, the constitution and independence of judiciary.

He recalled that when he was offered the position he was told that the lasting relationship was built on adherence to the law. “But I interjected by saying that the lasting relationship is built on adherence to the constitutional norms.”

Mr Malik said when justice was done by the courts it was always the state that won.

“We have all the expectation from your office,” the chief justice said. “We all have to follow the mandate and dictates of the constitution and if we were on the same page for upholding the rule of the law, it would be the executive, the parliament and the judiciary which would be strengthened day-by-day in the end.”

Mr Malik said: “We share the same venture and sail in the common boat,” adding that the judiciary and the executive would sail and sink together.

Later in the evening, Mr Malik called on the chief justice.