October 21st, 2020

Bureau Report


LAHORE

The Sindh Bar Council has called upon the Chief Justice of Pakistan to take suo motu notice of the ongoing crisis in Sindh saying the judiciary of Pakistan has remained a silent spectator in the face of the creeping martial law.

In a resolution, the Bar Council says the leave applications tendered by dozens of senior police officers throughout Sindh citing demoralization of the police force due to the brazen interference in policing functions are a sign of the complete breakdown of the rule of law and an undeclared martial law.

Sindh Bar Council says it is shocked at the report that the Inspector General of Sindh police was abducted from his residence by the Rangers/agencies and forced to issue orders to arrest opposition leader Muhammad Safdar, husband of Maryam Nawaz. Till now the report has not been contradicted by the relevant authority and has been tacitly confirmed by the Sindh Government, the resolution reads.

The Bar Council says the judiciary of Pakistan has remained a silent spectator in the face of the creeping martial law and indeed, is widely being seen as a facilitator of the elements who wish to carry out an extra-constitutional role.

“For several years now, Bars throughout Pakistan (and a handful of bold judges) have been protesting against the interference by covert agencies/the establishment in judicial affairs. However, unlike the Sindh police, the judiciary is yet to take a strong stance against such interference,” the Bar Council resolution reads.

The Sindh Bar Council feels that unless the trend of military interference in civil and judicial administration is immediately reversed it will permanently damage the public reputation and trust not only in the government and the judiciary of Pakistan but also the beloved Armed Forces of Pakistan.

 Embed Sindh Bar Resolution copy here

“The Bar Council calls upon the Chief Justice of Pakistan, therefore, to urgently take suo motu notice at this ongoing crisis and fix it for hearing and inquiry before a full court of the Supreme Court and to issue a notice to the Vice Chairmen of all the Bar Councils, the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association and to Presidents of the provincial High Court Bar Associations (at the principal seats) to address the serious implications it poses tor the rule of law and constitutionalism in Pakistan,” the resolution concludes.

 ‘Judicial inquiry into Sindh IGP incident’

Speaking to Voicepk.net on the phone from Karachi, Syed Haider Imam Rizvi, Vice Chairman of Sindh Bar Council, says the present situation in which senior police officials have tendered leave applications over interference in policing functions is not reflective of a democratic country. “The Bar Council is calling for an independent and transparent investigation into the incident through a judicial inquiry,” Rizvi says.

In his opinion, if a political leader raises slogans in favor of Fatima Jinnah, the mother of the nation, or a slogan about respecting the electorate, it is not tantamount to contempt of the sanctity of Quaid’s mausoleum.

Rizvi says the Sindh Bar Council in its resolution has requested the Chief Justice of Pakistan to summon all heads of other Bar Councils and Supreme Court Bar Association so that lawyers from all parts of the country could inform the apex court that the military intervention in civil affairs was not limited to Sindh alone.

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