KARACHI: Rich tributes were paid to senior judge of the Sindh High Court, Justice Munib Akhtar, on his elevation as judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, in a full court reference held at the SHC on Thursday.
Presiding the reference, the Chief Justice, of Sindh High Court, Justice Ahmed Ali M Sheikh said Justice Munib Akhtar delivered several important decisions on the constitutional and legal issues and his services to the judiciary will be long remembered. The Chief Justice said Justice Akhtar and some other judges have been working together in high court since 2009, addin the outgoing judge was not only a brilliant jurist but also a very good friend. Highlighting some of the landmark judgments of Justice Akhtar, the chief justice said he is a role model for the judges.
Justice Munib Akhtar thanked the SHC judges and lawyers for supporting him in dispensation of justice. Justice Akhtar said he is grateful to the chief justice, other serving judges of the high court, retired colleagues, representatives of the legal fraternity, court staff and his family for extending support, adding he would not have archived this without their help.
The bar representatives except for the Sindh Bar Council also spoke on the occasion and paid tributes to Justice Akhtar. The President Karachi Bar Association, Haider Imam Rizvi, felicitated the Justice Munib Akhtar over his elevation and expressed hope that he will soon take his rightful place among the great jurists of Pakistan.
On withdrawal of invitation to Sindh Bar Council’s vice chairman on SBC’s opinion over elevation of Justice Akhtar, he said the bar's criticism of the judicial behavior must be viewed constructively, however it was decided by the bar that such a regrettable act of discourtesy, should not disrupt the reference for a judge who has served the SHC with great honor and distinction, and whom the Bar holds in great esteem and regard. He said the reason of bar's dissent over the elevation of Justice Akhtar is that the judiciary has made the rule of seniority, mandatory for every institution and the principle of seniority is seen as a necessary safeguard, against the arbitrariness in the appointments. The full court reference was attended by the SHC judges and a large number of lawyers including federal and provincial law officers.