Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar has taken notice of a lawyer, Yousaf Saleem, not being selected as a civil judge by Lahore High Court (LHC) allegedly over being visually impaired, according to a statement issued by the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
According to the statement, the media outlets reported that Saleem, a gold medalist from University of Punjab in LLB (Honors) who topped the written examination of the Civil Judges conducted by LHC in 2017 among 6,500 candidates, was not selected in the interview on the grounds that he had a different ability, i.e. “blindness”.
Justice Nisar, according to the statement, observed that a person can hold the post of a judge even if he/she is blind, provided he/she meets all the other qualifications. "It appears that in this case his fundamental rights under Articles 9, 14 and 25 of the Constitution, the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), ratified by Pakistan in year 2011, the 3% quota under the Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation) Ordinance, 1981, and the jurisprudence developed by the Lahore High Court in PLD 2017 Lahore 406 and PLD 2017 Lahore 1 were not considered by the Lahore High Court," reads the statement.
The CJP has referred the matter to the LHC chief justice and the relevant committee of the high court for reconsideration of Saleem as a candidate and to give its opinion.
Meanwhile, Saleem expressed his gratitude to the CJP for taking notice of the matter after DawnNewsTV's programme was aired and said that he will "play his role dutifully for the provision of justice, if appointed as a civil judge".