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JCP seeks record of most senior judges


The Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) on Tuesday sought data regarding the reported judgments and cases decided by the six most senior judges of the Lahore High Court (LHC) as well as 12 senior judges of the Sindh High Court.

Meanwhile, the body unanimously approved a six-month job extension of 13 additional judges of the LHC.

The JCP – a constitutional body that approves the names for the appointment of superior court judges – has also decided that it might consider confirmation of LHC additional judges anytime within a period of six months.

Currently, three seats of the apex court judges are vacant.

The body’s meeting was held to consider either confirmation or extension in the tenure of 13 additional judges of LHC for another six months or a year who were elevated to the high court last year.

Also read: LHC recommends JCP to drop names of two judges

It was learnt that the newly-appointed Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar, who was also in attendance, urged the JCP to confirm the appointment of additional judges.

Similarly, Pakistan Bar Council’s (PBC) representative in the commission, Akhtar Hussain and retired Judge Sarmad Jalal Osmani, also endorsed the job confirmation of additional judges.

The commission did not, however, consider the performance of additional judges on account of the non-appointment of Punjab’s law minister as well as attorney general for Pakistan.

The matter of the appointment of SC judges has been marred by challenges for the JCP as the last six appointments were seen as violations of the seniority principle. The superior bars have on many occasions lodged strong protests against the appointment of judges against the seniority principle.

Prompted by agitation from the lawyers’ community, former CJP Gulzar Ahmed had formed a rules committee led by incumbent CJP Umar Ata Bandial to evolve criteria regarding the appointment of superior courts judges.

Also read: Superior bars want additional judges be made permanent

A representative of the superior bar holds the view that the legal fraternity demands that comprehensive criteria concerning the appointment be evolved before considering the new appointments in SC.

It was learnt that LHC Judge Shahid Waheed and SHC Judge Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro were being considered for the elevation to the top court.

Justice Shahid Waheed is on 4th in LHC seniority while Justice Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro stands on the 12th spot on the SHC seniority list.

Senior lawyers opine that if the JCP does not want to elevate judges on the basis of the seniority principle, then appointments should be made on merit rather than “favouritism and nepotism”.

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