At the August 12 meeting of the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP), Chief Justice Nasirul Mulk is expected to propose the elevation of Balochistan High Court (BHC) chief justice Qazi Faez Isa as Supreme Court judge and the nomination of senior-most Justice Ghulam Mustafa Mengal as chief judge of Balochistan High Court.
Officials privy to the development told The Express Tribune that Chief Justice Mulk, as the commission’s chairman, summoned its first meeting on August 12 and according to its agenda, the elevation of BHC chief justice will be proposed. “The agenda of the meeting has been conveyed to the commission’s members,” a member of the panel revealed.
The incumbent BHC chief justice, Qazi Faez Isa, completed his five-year tenure on Tuesday. According to the constitution, he is entitled to be elevated to the Supreme Court after working for five years in the high court. However, there is only one vacant position in the Supreme Court after the retirement of former CJP Tassaduq Hussain Jillani. But since the retirement of former chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry in December last year, there is no representation of Balochistan among apex court judges.
Meanwhile, Justice Ghulam Mustafa Mengal will remain chief justice of BHC until December 25. Likewise, the incumbent BHC chief justice will perform his duty as top court judge for more than ten years as he will retire on October 26, 2024.His tenure would include a one-year stint as CJP. Officials said the commission will also discuss the confirmation of seven additional judges of the Sindh High Court (SHC) and three additional judges of BHC.
Changing the rules
Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) vice chairman Muhammad Ramazan Chaudhry has asked its representative in the commission, Yasin Azad, to take up the amendment in Judicial Commission Rules 2012 at the next meeting. The superior bars have expressed reservations over the fact that the CJP is also the judicial panel’s chairman. Lawyers have sought the transfer of the chairman’s power to appoint judges of superior courts to the commission. They are demanding that the judicial commission’s rules be amended immediately and have submitted a draft of the proposed amendments in rules 2, 3, 6 and 8.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 6th,2014.
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