PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court dismissed two petitions of around 80 civil judges seeking direct participation in the additional district and sessions judges’ vacancy examination.
A bench comprising Justice Irshad Qaiser and Justice Muhammad Daud Khan dismissed the petitions of civil judge Asmatullah Wazir and others hailing from numerous districts of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. The petitioners had nominated the provincial chief secretary, law and establishment secretaries and PHC registrar as respondents.
The petitioners’ counsel Abdul Latif Afridi told the court that under Section 5C of Services Rules 2001, one-third of the initial recruitment is from amongst members of the K-P Bar Council, public prosecutors and additional public prosecutors. Similarly, two-third of the promotions is announced, on the recommendation of the departmental promotion committee for senior civil judge-cum-magistrates.
He added the PHC registrar recently advertised 25 vacancies of BPS-20 additional district and sessions judges and invited applications for these posts.
“The criteria for direct recruitment for the posts are eight years of experience as an advocate and 35 years is the minimum age,” one of the petitions reads.
The court was further informed that the Lahore High Court advertised similar posts in 2012 and allowed civil judges to participate in the recruitment process. Furthermore, the Sindh and Islamabad high courts also permitted civil judges to participate in the examinations.
In his arguments, K-P Bar Council member Ijaz Sabi said the court has no jurisdiction over the filed petitions. He said the civil judges can approach the court only when their basic rights are violated, which is not the case.
Sabi added lower courts have their own tribunal and if judges have any grievances, they can approach the body. He added the number of eligible lawyers is in the thousands while only 180 judges are eligible for the aforementioned posts. “These petitions are not maintainable and should be dismissed,” he requested the court. Upon hearing the arguments, the court dismissed the petitions.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 5th, 2015.
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