By Akhtar Ali Kureshi
Last week a critical deadlock emerged between the government and judiciary and it was apparently feeling that the government acted hurriedly against the Constitution and precedents of Supreme Court while suffering from an acute misconception due to the bad advice given by its so-called advisors who disappeared from the scene thereafter. The delay caused in the appointment of judges in the superior judiciary was not only condemned by all the stakeholders but it also caused an irreparable loss to the litigants due to the scarcity of judges in the High Courts. A suo motu action was taken by the Chief Justice and a three member bench of the Supreme Court suspended the notifications of elevation of Justice Khawaja Muhammad Sharif, Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court as a judge of the SC and Justice Saqib Nisar as acting Chief Justice of the LHC.
The matter was going to be very serious than all of sudden Prime Minister's diplomacy came into the picture taking all burden on his shoulders and he tried to wash the earlier grime. However every body appreciated the move of PM resultantly judges were appointed in the SC as well as in the High Courts spreading a new fragrance of justice. This gave a peace of mind and hope to achieve justice in the shortest possible time as enshrined in the Judicial Policy. This invaluable fragrance also created a sense of unity in the superior judiciary which was never ever seen before since 1947 and it has definitely long lasting impact on our judicial system. The bold sacrifice of Justice Saqib Nisar created another milestone in our judicial history similarly Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa paid a significant contribution.
The new atmosphere of unity will enable us to fight back against usurper as earlier our judiciary by itself come under the influence of intruders and lost its precious independence as all of us observed through many judgments of the SC after October 1999. In a well-cultured and a democratic society the significance and importance of independence of judiciary is usually understood and widely respected.
Newly appointed judges have taken oath in the LHC in an overcrowded gathering and kick off their duty supposing that every judge is free to decide matters before him in accordance with his assessment of the facts and his understanding of the law without improper influences, inducements or pressures, direct or indirect from any quarter for any reason and that the judiciary is independent from Executive and has jurisdiction, directly or by way of review over all issues of a judicial nature, etc.
It goes without saying that no society can be flourished and no country has potential to show progress without having an independent, bold and united judiciary. It was cure issue of Pakistan lacking such type of judiciary which by the grace of Almighty Allah our beloved country has attained the fascinated position in the leadership of Chief Justice of Pakistan.
It was found true that despite having a good talent and potential our nation could not achieved the status of advance and modern nation and no body has vision to point out the massive lacking of judicial deficiency. It may be little late but ultimately the desired destiny is being achieved with utmost respect and honour opening the door of prosperity and well-being of the common man.
The justice concerns itself with the proper ordering of things and persons within a society. As a concept it has been subject to philosophical, legal, and theological reflection and debate throughout the world. A number of important questions surrounding justice have been fiercely debated in the society. What is justice? What does it demand from individuals and societies? What is the proper distribution of wealth and resources in the society: equality, meritocracies, according to status, or some other arrangement? There are numberless possible answers to these questions from divergent perspectives on the political and philosophical spectrum.
In one sense, all theories of justice claim that everyone should get what he deserves fairly and under the law.
The High Courts which were full of judges before July 31, 2009, and thereafter the historic judgment arrived and the PCO judges departed from the bench which created a vacuum culminated in the delay and frustration but now the situation has been improved and majority of judges taken their respective place. Another slot of judges of equal number is more needed to fill the gap and meet the fixed strength to serve the litigants expeditiously and effectively.
It is hoped that the government has learnt a lot from the bitter experience of last week and will be careful in future too to avoid the controversy with the judiciary. Similarly, the government will discharge its duty more efficiently by appointing more judges in the High Courts as required by the law and recommended by the Chief Justice of Pakistan.
The great judicial vision given by the CJ is not less than a blessing for helpless litigants in order to curb the misdeeds of black sheep hidden in the politicians, bureaucrats and many more. The legal fraternity is very much happy on these appointments and stand united to facilitate the Chief Justice to end corruption from our society and deliver instant justice to every citizen what he deserves.
The writer is an Advocate of Supreme Court of Pakistan, Clinical Professor of law, Freelance Columnist, Member of International Bar Association, London and former Assistant Advocate General Punjab