The courts will work for the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law without any fear, said Sindh High Court Chief Justice Mushir Alam on Tuesday at a joint condolence reference for the two lawyers who were gunned down last week.
All judges present and available in Karachi attended the meeting along with a large number of bar association members. “Lawlessness embeds itself in societies where the Constitution and laws are trampled on,” said the CJ. “Those who were victims of the violence were given legal assistance by the lawyers, turning the lawyers into targets for the miscreants and anti-social elements.”
He expressed concern about the recent wave of killings in Karachi, in which more than half a dozen advocates were shot dead by unidentified gunmen.
The condolence was organised by the Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA), Karachi Bar Association (KBA), Malir Bar Association (MBA) and Sindh Bar Council (SBC) at the SHCBA’s Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry Hall.
The SHC’s senior most judge, Justice Gulzar Ahmed, gave a brief address in which he shared the grief of the fraternity and their families. “The judiciary will play a role as an independent organ of the state,” assured Ahmed.
The SBC’s Iftikhar Javed Kazi said that the media was falsely propagating that the land and drug mafia were responsible for killing the lawyers. He warned that it was in fact the government that had subversive plans. In his view, the government did not want to accept a proactive judiciary, which is why, before tackling the judiciary head-on, it may have decided to first deal with the lawyers. “Those who participated in the peace rallies are not likely to restore peace, instead they are the ones who disturb the peace in the city,” said Kazi.
For the second consecutive day, court work at the SHC remained suspended and not a single case was heard as the lawyers were on strike. At a meeting with the chief minister, however, the bar associations agreed to call off the strike and go back to work from Wednesday after the government agreed to six of their demands.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 3rd, 2011.