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July 29, 2018

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Failed to put own house in order: CJP

LAHORE: The Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar conceded for the second time on Saturday that he had failed to put his own house in order despite being its head.

“I admit that I have not been able to put my own house in order in accordance with the expectations of our people, and I don’t regret confessing it,” he said while addressing judges from the district judiciary at the Punjab Judicial Academy here on Saturday. The Supreme Court and Lahore High Court judges were also present on the occasion.

The chief justice said he has no reservations about reviewing the judicial decisions, adding the judiciary could also make mistakes.

Talking about the current condition of the judiciary, Mian Saqib Nisar said the judiciary will take time to change, as it was a very long process. “Numerous laws have been updated, but it is a time-consuming task,” he said. He said the justice system could not be compared with the fundamental issues of people like health and education. “We have ensured provision of medicines at many hospitals,” he added. “I would not justify my suo motu actions in human rights cases at this forum, but I would make it clear that water crisis is a great threat to the stability of our country,” he said. “There has been a criminal negligence on the part of those who failed to address this crisis. There are international conspiracies behind the water shortage and failure to build new dams.” The chief justice said new dams are critical for the survival of Pakistan. He said the country might face severe dearth of water in the coming days. “The water issue in Pakistan is getting serious day by day as the previous governments did nothing in this regard,” he said. He asserted that dams are essential for the future generations of Pakistan. “Every citizen of Pakistan has to work in the national interest. The chief justice said work on emergency footing needed to be done in this regard. “The judiciary will do everything within its power to resolve this issue,” he assured the nation.

Commenting on the slow pace of civil litigation, he said amendments to the substantive law in accordance with the needs of the modern time is necessary for the speedy provision of justice. “Amendment to the procedural law alone could not serve the very purpose of speedy justice,” he added. He lamented that even in the current era of information technology the role of “patwari” is required for transfer of land. “It takes more than five years normally to obtain a succession certificate from a civil court,” he said.

The chief justice said unfortunately the overall decay in the society has also compromised the integrity of judges. He said judges are also responsible for multiplying litigations due to their incompetence. He said the task of dispensing quick justice could not be achieved unless the judges worked with passion. “A minor mistake of a civil judge would waste precious years of litigants,” the chief justice said. He urged the judges of lower courts to point out conflicting judgments of the Supreme Court on one point of law. “We are not here to perpetuate mistakes but to correct them,” he told the judges and added that it is necessary to admit mistakes. “We all have to make sacrifices for our posterity. Those who failed to find justice can easily approach me. For inducing change, one has to toil to make it happen.” The chief justice said, “Change comes with time and one shouldn’t stay at one spot for a very long time.”

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