‘Judicial system’

April 23, 2019


THIS refers to the letter ‘Judicial system’ (Apr 15) by M.A. Shahzad. The judiciary has to share the blame for the obsolete judicial system and shortage of judges, instead of putting the entire onus on the executive. The cause for existence of an outdated judicial system is similar to the existence of poor condition of public hospitals and the dilapidated public school system.

The elite class, including the rulers, can afford costly hospitalisation in private hospitals in Pakistan and are free to get treatment abroad out of the country’s dwindling reserves without hindrance. Similarly, the privileged class is able to educate their children in private elite schools in Pakistan or send their children abroad without restriction.

Unless the privileged class is cajoled into using public hospitals and made to seek admission for their children in public schools, the healthcare facilities and the state of public education would not improve.

In cases involving the rich and powerful, applications and petitions filed in the courts are accepted swiftly and the cases are fixed and heard out of turn on priority. Adjournments, so frequent in the case of ordinary litigants, seldom take place. Even bails to these individuals are allowed by court without the presence of the accused, something not available to an ordinary person.

Unless the judiciary changes its attitude and treats all the litigants equal, no improvement in the judicial system is foreseen. What is required is the will and skill of the judiciary to reform — a thing which is lacking.

Arshad M. Khawaja

Published in Dawn, April 23rd, 2019