LAWYERS observed a black day on Monday and boycotted the court proceedings throughout Punjab as protest against new Contempt of Court Act 2012.
The Pakistan Bar Council, Punjab Bar Council and Lahore High Court Bar Association (LHCBA) had given a unanimous strike call against the new Act. The lawyers expressed solidarity with the Supreme Court of Pakistan and urged the government to withdraw the Act.
The lawyers hoisted black flags at buildings of the bar associations and also pasted black flags along with wall of the LHC building. Following the strike call by lawyers’ organizations, the high court judges heard only the cases of urgent nature and did not do judicial work after 11am while a complete strike was observed at the district judiciary throughout the province.
Wearing black armbands, the lawyers chanted slogans in favor of judiciary. They said the Contempt of Court Act was against the fundamental rights and had been introduced to protect Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in case he defied the apex court order to write a letter to the Swiss authorities for reopening of cases against President Asif Zardari. “We will stand by the superior judiciary against the government’s attempt to undermine its dignity. The new contempt law is a black law as it is aimed at subduing the free judiciary,” the lawyers said. They also demanded the government implement all judicial orders in letter and spirit. Meanwhile, lawyers of the Lahore Bar Association (LBA) observed Monday as a black day to protest against the Contempt of the Court Law, 2012 adopted by the National Assembly. On Monday, the lawyers boycotted court work due to which most of the cases put on the next hearing without any development. The LBA also hoisted black flag on the building of Aiwan-e-Adl. The lawyers vowed to fight against such amendments to the constitution, saying that the purpose of the amended law was to save new premier Raja Parvez Ashraf from the NRO judgment implementation.