There have been no proceedings and no cases were taken up in the court of a senior civil judge since December 26 last year, as the honourable judge is on leave.
The total number of cases pending before the first senior civil judge, Farzana Mushtaq, is 396 and almost 15 to 20 new ones arrive each month. These include criminal, civil and rent cases. The judge initially went on leave on December 26 for five days, but then she extended it to three months. She then applied for a two-year leave which was declined. Later, she submitted an application for a six-month leave, which was granted by the Sindh High Court.
The oldest case pending before the first senior civil judge pertains to a property dispute and dates back to 1996 – two years after the Malir courts were established.
When a judge is on leave, a link judge can hear the cases under the Sindh Civil Court Rules but cannot proceed with the evidence or dispose of the case.
The president of the Malir Bar Association, Ashraf Samoo, said that litigants are suffering as the court is vacant, and another senior civil judge should have been appointed.
Samoo said that a request had been forwarded to the Sindh High Court as well, but nothing has happened so far.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 3rd, 2012.