ISLAMABAD: The average shelf life of all types of cases in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) is 430 days, states the IHC registrar in his reply submitted in a case by five young lawyers, regarding the judicial reforms in the country.
Umer Gilani, Hadiya Aziz, Muhammad Haider Imtiaz, Attaullah Hakim Kundi and Raheel Ahmed are the five lawyers who have filed the case under Article 184(3) of the Constitution. The five lawyers made all the registrars of high courts, the federal government, all provincial governments and others respondents.
The applicants seek directions from the Supreme Court for improving the capacity and performance as regards the administration of justice. The SC will resume the hearing of the case on September 14.
The IHC said that the high court had collected data of all the decided cases since 2011. The result shows that the average shelf life of all types of cases is 430 days. The court added that from the year 2015 to 2017, a total of 1,679 civil cases were decided and the results show 241 days as the average shelf life of civil cases during the period.
It was also informed that district and sessions judges have sought time till September 22 to carry out the task of statistical study of the life cycle of civil cases in order to know the total shelf life of civil cases by applying appropriate sampling techniques for data collection.
The reply further revealed that 14 different courts, including the IHC, didn’t prosecute even a single witness for perjury under section 193-196 of Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) from January 2015 to December 2017.
It was also submitted that these courts have awarded cost of litigation in 43 cases under section 35 and 35A of CrPC from January 2015 to December 2017. The total amount of costs of litigation under these sections is Rs7,192,000.
Earlier, the Sindh High Court, in a written reply regarding judicial reforms case, said the Sindh judiciary including the high court did not prosecute even a single witness for perjury under section 193-196 PPC during the last three years.
The SHC added that during the last three years, the entire Sindh judiciary, including the SHC itself, have awarded costs amounting to only Rs729,000.
On the other hand, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar had, in a recent speech, described frivolous litigation as a major contributing factor to the backlog of cases.
The petition also told the SC that under the guidance of Justice (retd) Jawwad S Khawaja, the former chief justice of Pakistan, it was determined that in a case where the parties chose to avail all legal remedies up to the Supreme Court level, it took an average of 25 years to conclude litigation.