SC moved against appointment of judges as law colleges’ principals

Updated July 31, 2019

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The Supreme Court has been requested to review its Aug 31, 2018 order of allowing retired judges of superior or sessions courts with five-year judicial experience to be appointed as principals of law colleges. — AFP/File
The Supreme Court has been requested to review its Aug 31, 2018 order of allowing retired judges of superior or sessions courts with five-year judicial experience to be appointed as principals of law colleges. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has been requested to review its Aug 31, 2018 order of allowing retired judges of superior or sessions courts with five-year judicial experience to be appointed as principals of law colleges.

Advocate Fareed Ahmed A. Dayo, who has been the senior most professor at Sindh Muslim (Govt) Law College in Karachi for the past 17 years, argued in his petition that the apex court decision was contrary to the policy formulated by the National Judicial Policy Making Committee, which functions under the chief justice of Pakistan, since the committee’s decisions were bound to be followed by superior court judges even after their retirement.

The petition argued that it would be below the status or dignity of the judge of a superior court to act as secretary of the board of governors (BoGs) of law colleges in Karachi in terms of Section 6 of the Sindh Government Education and Training Institutions Ordinance, 1960.

Fareed Dayo was appointed lecturer on April 1, 2003 and confirmed by S.M. Law College’s BoGs on April 10, 2004.

The petitioner contended that he had a legitimate expectancy to be appointed principal of the law college, but the Sindh High Court had on a petition ordered issuance of advertisement in newspapers inviting applications for the post. Subsequently, the petitioner was not considered for the post and he apprehended that he would be excluded permanently and some retired judge might be appointed as principal of the law college.

The petition contended that the apex court’s judgement would violate the fundamental rights of senior faculty members of different government law colleges, if outsiders/retired judges were appointed principals of such institutions. It said the Supreme Court had also failed to take into consideration that no criteria had been fixed for the appointment of chairman and members of BoGs for law colleges, adding that the chairmanship of BoGs was given to the vice chancellor of the relevant University of Law Colleges.

The petition contended that the S.M. Law College was governed under the Sindh Government Education and Training Institutions Ordinance, 1960, and not under the Rules of 2015 (which has repealed the Rules of 1978) framed by the PBC under the Pakistan Bar Council Legal Education Rules, 2015.

The petition explained that there were two kinds of law colleges — one run by the private sector under the PBC Legal Education Rules 2015, and the other by the government under the Sindh Government Education and Training Institutions Ordinance.

“The very object of framing Pakistan Bar Council Legal Education Rules, 2015, with its new Rule 13(A) purportedly promulgated on June 30, 2017, was to prevent the mushroom growth of private law colleges as has been mentioned in its preamble, but as far as the Sindh Muslim Govt Law College, Karachi, is concerned, being a government college, retirement age of the principal was 60 years under the Sindh Government Rules and also under resolutions passed by the board of governors from time to time since the inception of this prime institution,” the petition said.

Published in Dawn, July 31st, 2019