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PBC against ad hoc appointments

February 17, 2011

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The Pakistan Bar Council rejected a resolution adopted by a full court meeting of the SC proposing reappointment of Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday. — File Photo

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Bar Council rejected on Thursday a resolution adopted on Monday by a full court meeting of the Supreme Court proposing reappointment of Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday as an ad hoc judge of the apex court for another year and called for elimination of ad hocism in the judiciary in all forms.

A meeting of the PBC executive committee, jointly presided over by its Chairman Asrar-ul-Haq Mian and Vice-Chairman Abdul Lateef Afridi, observed that the full-court resolution was not only unprecedented in the country’s judicial history but also unconstitutional and violative of Article 182 of the Constitution as amended under the 19th Amendment.

The meeting criticised the resolution seeking reappointment of Justice Ramday, whose one-year term as ad hoc judge expired on Thursday, and appointment of Justice (retd) Rehmat Hussain Jafri as ad hoc judge for two years.

It reminded the PBC’s representative in the Judicial Commission, the attorney general and the law minister, who by and large represent the legal community, to support the stand taken by the PBC with respect to ad hocism.

It said the PBC and the legal community in general always appreciated the principles laid down in the Al-Jihad Trust case with respect to independence of judiciary and against ad hocism. The full-court resolution, it added, was also against the spirit of that judgment.

The meeting expressed serious concern over orders passed by the apex court suspending the decision of the parliamentary committee with respect to non-confirmation of four additional judges of the Lahore High Court and extension of the tenure of additional judges in different high courts.

The committee criticised the order passed by Justice Jahanzeb Rahim of the Peshawar High Court, issuing contempt notices to the judges of the Supreme Court and calling upon the President of Pakistan to file references against Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and Justice Shakirullah Jan.

The meeting asked the attorney general to convene a meeting of the PBC on Feb 23 to discuss the issues.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry has convened a meeting of the Judicial Commission on Saturday for consideration of the appointment of the two ad hoc judges in the Supreme Court and confirmation of nine additional judges of the Sindh High Court.