UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

People in Pakistan have high hopes to reinstated Chief Justice

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, March 26, IRNA - Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry who was sacked by former President Musharraf in 2007 emergency rule, has assumed the office with high hopes of helpless people.

There is great perception in Pakistan that the judiciary is penetrated by corruption and that is why Justice Chaudhry himself referred to the corrupt practices in the institution of judiciary.

'I request all of you to come and point out incidents of corruption right from the lower court to the higher court, including myself, in case of any complaint of corruption or misconduct,’ the chief justice said while hearing his first case after assuming the charge.

The complaint should be based on facts, instead of hearsay, and if found correct action would be taken, the chief justice added.

A popular perception permeates Pakistan that judges are corrupt. Judges take bribes. They decide cases on the basis of beneficial contacts that litigants offer rather than on merit. To eradicate corruption, the law and order approach will not work. Judicial ethics and anti-bribery laws are necessary but insufficient.

Chaudhry, who shies away from the media and refuses to make political statements, has a reputation as an upstanding, independent-minded judge -- qualities that experts say will set the tone for a cleaner judiciary.

Defying this history, Chief Justice Chaudhry has come to represent judicial independence and constitutional boldness in holding the Establishment accountable.

Chaudhry would have to face a number of gigantic tasks which include many high profile cases in coming days.

One of Chaudhry's main tasks will be to oversee the work of his subordinate judges and review all appointments made since Musharraf declared emergency rule and suspended the constitution.

Institutional breakdown is one of germane problem which lead to confrontation between judiciary and military.

The history of Judiciary in Pakistan has been brittle; this can be ascertained from the fact that the Doctrine of Necessity came up.

This was conceived by the Pakistani Supreme Court which granted a legal imprimatur to the military coup.

Some of the most famous cases in Pakistan's history in no particular order are Justice Ikhlaq Ahmed was dismissed from his post because of his left wing views during General Ayub Khan tenure.

In 2007, the Supreme Court headed by Justice Chaudhry ruled against the government, saying that the selling of Pakistan Steel Mills was done in "indecent haste".

Many people in Pakistan had been allegedly kidnapped by the American and Pakistani intelligence agencies in pursuance of the "War on Terror." These people were arrested without any warrant or court order and denied any access to counsel as enshrined in the Constitution of Pakistan.

These actions were challenged in the Supreme Court and a bench under the Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry took up the case.

As the case proceeded, the revelations during the proceedings increased public outrage on the matter. The government eventually released 107 missing persons, who narrated their stories of torture and solitary confinements.

It also became evident that most of the persons were detained for alleged links with the Secular Separatist insurgency in Balochistan.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list