Islamabad (11-05-2022) :
Senate Standing Committee on Law & Justice held its meeting today under the Chairmanship of Senator & Barrister Syed Ali Zafar here at the Parliament Lodges
The Chairman of the Committee stated that it was the mandate of the Committee to ensure that the rule of law is implemented in letter and spirit. He said that the Committee must ensure that the dignity, respect and honor of all institutions should not only be maintained but enhanced and augmented which is the only way in which rule of law can be established in a country.
The Chairman of the Committee further stated that since law and justice is intricately linked with the judiciary, it is the Committee’s duty to ensure that the interests of this august institution are fully protected. He said that whenever a judgement is rendered by a Court, some parties agree with it while others disagree and if a judgement is wrong then everyone has a right to give a fair comment and criticize the same and debate it. He said that he knows as a fact that judges welcome such a criticism and debate. However, the Chairman pointed out that the practice of criticizing the judge on the basis of disagreement with the judgement must be stopped and, if necessary, the Committee needs to come up with laws and suggestions how to curb such a growing practice.
Senator Zafar further said that the judges cannot come out of their chambers to defend themselves and this obligation falls upon the Committee. At the same time, he said that it is the role of the Committee that all institutions remain within their domain. “While Parliament is not entitled to criticize, similarly, the Courts must restrain themselves from interfering in Parliamentary business”, said the Chairman.
The Committee members pointed out and requested Committee’s Chairman to conduct a debate on the various constitutional crisis that have erupted in the country. Senator Zafar stated that such a debate is necessary but must be meaningful and result oriented so that a future course of action can be laid out. He said that all sides are blaming each other for alleged constitutional violations and therefore the agenda for the debate must be drawn up in a systematic, logical and considered manner so that the purpose of the debate can be achieved. The Chairman said that he will draft the agenda of the meeting accordingly.
The need for the debate arose when Senator Raza Rabbani in a letter addressed to the Chairman requested that in the light of the constitutional crisis his proposal for amendment in the Constitution may be withdrawn. Senator Kakar pointed out that the current government was appointing people who were acting against the interests of the country to constitutional posts which must be checked. Senator Zafar said that this will also be part of the agenda for discussion.
The Constitutional amendment by Senator Mushtaq Ahmed, relating to omission of alcoholic consumptions for religious purposes, was deferred for debate after receiving comments from the Ministry of Law.
The meeting was attended by Senator Manzoor Ahmed Kakar, Senator Musadik Malik, Senator Mian Raza Rabbani and Senator Mushtaq Ahmed Khan. The Minister for Law, Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar along with senior officials of the Ministry were also in attendance.