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January 12, 2019

Judicial activism not aggression: CJP

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January 12, 2019

LAHORE: The Chief Justice, Mian Saqib Nisar, on Friday once again defended judicial activism, saying it was not aimed at clipping the wings of any individual or institution.

“Judicial activism was never meant to interfere in the jurisdiction of other institutions or to humiliate anyone. It was not an aggression,” the CJP said. Speaking at a farewell dinner, hosted by the Lahore High Court Bar Association, the CJP responded to his critics saying he laid the foundation of judicial activism in the country with full bona fide.

The chief justice said he would have made mistakes intentionally or unintentionally but whatever he did was for the rule of law only. He reiterated that he never tried to disgrace anyone. He, however, admitted that the judiciary’s respect in people’s eyes has lowered due to inordinate delay in dispensation of justice. CJP Nisar said he always kept in mind the constitutionallimits of the judiciary and other institutions. He said the sole purpose of his visits to hospitals was to ensure correct utilisation of the government resources. Chief Justice of Pakistan-designate Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, Lahore High Court Chief Justice Sardar Muhammad Shamim Khan and other judges were also present.

Recalling his childhood memories, the chief justice said he witnessed top lawyers of their times like Ijaz Batalvi and SM Zafar advancing arguments in courts well before joining the legal profession. “My association with Lahore High Court is 56-year-old as I used to visit this premises with my father during my school days,” he said. “My whole life, I tried to become a fair judge as it carries a great reward in life and hereafter,” he said and added a justice-based society was critical for survival of a country. The CJP also shared his experience of holding an open court, saying he met people in public hospitals having no money to buy medicines.

He regretted that the people were not getting justice in time from courts. “We also miss quality of arguments by lawyers in the courts nowadays,” added the chief justice. He advised judges of district judiciary to do their work like a passion instead of taking it as an employment only. He pointed out that a police reform package was going to be introduced on January 14 in Islamabad with the support of law and justice commission.

The CJP proudly told the bar that the Supreme Judicial Council had decided all the pending references against judges and was left with two only. The judiciary is holding its accountability on merit, the chief justice said and urged lawyers to also put their house in order. Chief Justice Nisar urged lawyers to do hard work as they were part and parcel of the judicial system. He lamented that petitions being filed under Section 22-A of CrPC (against non-registration of FIR) had hijacked the courts. He said the judges were not supposed to ensure registration of cases.

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