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ISLAMABAD: Gun attacks on Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan’s residence in Lahore on Sunday drew widespread condemnation, with politicians and representatives of the legal fraternity demanding proper investigation into the incident.

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi directed the federal and provincial authorities to bring the culprits to task at the earliest.

The Inter-Services Public Relations condemned the incident and asked the stakeholders to ensure a secured environment for effective functioning of the state institutions.

Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani urged the government to investigate the incident and bring the suspects to the court of law and punish them. He said that parliament stood by the judiciary to ensure the rule of law.

Political leaders, lawyers condemn incident

Former president and Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari said the firing at the house of the Supreme Court judge was a very serious matter and demanded a judicial inquiry into the incident. He also demanded immediate arrest of the culprits to bring them to book.

In a tweet, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan said: “These Sicilian-mafia-like tactics to pressurise senior judiciary are unacceptable in any democracy. PTI stands firmly behind the judiciary and rule of law and this is one reason behind our 29th April Minar-i-Pakistan jalsa.”

He said that the nation had rejected the money launderers, tax evaders and asset concealers, alleging that the incident was a typical intimidation that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and its leadership did against the judiciary and all those who exposed them.

Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid leaders Chaudhry Shujaat Husain and Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi demanded a judicial inquiry into the firing incident to expose real culprits involved in it.

Expressing solidarity with the judiciary, they said the entire nation stood by the judiciary for the supremacy of the Constitution.

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Sherry Rehman asked why the government of Punjab did not take swift action after the first attack and waited for another incident in the morning. The judiciary was being threatened, she said, adding that those who had threatened the court should be investigated.

Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) vice chairman Kamran Murtaza and PBC Executive Committee chairman Shabbir Shar strongly condemned the two attacks on the house of the apex court judge within a span of a few hours.

In a statement, the PBC representatives said the “calculated firing” on the house of Justice Ahsan was apparently aimed at threatening and pressurising the judiciary to detract it from the very bold actions being taken for the rule of law and safeguarding the fundamental rights of people and against the plunderers.

“The legal fraternity is united and standing behind the judiciary with full force to support its courageous actions for the rule of law and the supremacy of the Constitution,” they said.

Terming the incident an utter failure of the government and its law enforcement agencies to provide safety and security to members of the judiciary, they demanded immediate arrest of the culprits and exemplary punishment to them.

Published in Dawn, April 16th, 2018

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