KARACHI: A representative meeting of the lawyers of Pakistan held on Monday has decided to observe a Black Day on November 3, as part of their strategy to carry the lawyers’ movement forward to restore judges deposed on November 3, 2007 by General Pervez Musharraf and to establish an independent judiciary in the country.
The meeting of the Steering Committee (SC) of the lawyer’s National Coordination Council (NCC), which has replaced the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC), was held at the Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA) consultation room. The meeting was jointly hosted by the SHCBA, Karachi Bar Association (KBA) and Sindh Bar Council (SBC) and the participants decided to hold a protest demonstration on Constitution Avenue on November 3.
Addressing a press briefing after the four-hour long meeting, Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan (SCBAP) President and NCC Chairman Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan said that their movement will only end after Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry is restored as Chief Justice of Pakistan.
The meeting, he said, discussed the role of the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) at length and expressed concerns over its dissociation with the lawyers’ movement. Distributing copies of the resolutions adopted by the NCC steering committee, he said that the meeting acknowledged that Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry is the de jure Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) and termed the PBC members’ invitation to the present incumbent Chief Justice Abdul Hameed Dogar to hand over additional premises as a condemnable act.
Ahsan added that concerns were expressed over the deteriorating law and order situation in ‘Pukhtoonkhwa’ (NWFP) and Balochistan. The participants also discussed other issues that the nation faces, particularly the spiralling prices of essential commodities, discriminatory load shedding and the practice of burying women alive, which is widespread in Balochistan.
The overwhelming majority of the participants were of the view that if Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry is restored as CJP, he would have taken notice of the violations against women and would have also taken action against hoarders and black marketers to provide relief to the masses and justice to the families of the victimized women.
He informed the press about the singular honour being conferred upon Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, the Medal of Freedom by Harvard University. He announced that the lawyers of Pakistan will nominate Justice Iftikhar for the Nobel Peace Prize, while stating that Ali Ahmed Kurd will contest the elections for SCBAP President for the term commencing November 1.
He said that Kurd will contest elections on only one manifesto, whether or not the lawyers can ignore the actions of an individual who abrogated the Constitution of Pakistan, removed judges of the superior judiciary, arrested them and kept them and their families in illegal confinement for no reason or fault.
Learning a lesson from the Long March controversy, a reserved SCBAP president, in carefully chosen words, told the media that the mechanics, logistics and other arrangements and decisions will be divulged at the appropriate time.
To a question, he said that lawyers will now only pay heed to directives of the NCC and follow its decision to ignore the PBC. Ahsan also said that in the near future, the actions and struggle of lawyers will prove that the lawyers movement is still strong and adhering to their cherished objective of establishing a truly independent judiciary and restoration of judges deposed on November 3, 2007.
KARACHI:President Supreme Court Bar Association Aitizaz Ehsan has said that lawyers were committed to their struggle for the restoration of deposed judges and would stick to their cause despite government’s unwillingness to restore the deposed judiciary.
While addressing a press conference after the meeting of National Coordination Committee in Karachi, Ch. Aitizaz Ehsan reaffirmed that the lawyers would continue their movement till restoration of all deposed judges. “Though this Parliament had withdrawn from its written agreements thrice and some deposed judges also taken oath twice which had reduced pressure on government, however it would not affect Lawyer’s Movement’s spirit” he vowed. He announced that Ali Ahmed Kurd had been nominated for next Bar Presidential Elections and said that the decision to observe Black Day on 3rd November was taken in order to register a huge protest against government’s lethargic actions regarding restoration of judiciary. “Lawyers would gather at Constitution Avenue Islamabad, however sit-in would be decided later, ” he maintained. While talking about Lawyers’ Convention he said that such events were also often held during Musharraf regime but committed and sincere lawyers never participated in such conventions and same would happen this time. He also advised lawyers not to maintain any relation with Pakistan Bar Association as it had dissociated itself from Lawyers’ Movement.
He also said that deposed Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry would visit the country and would confer awards on lawyers who played a vital role in the movement.
Chaudhry Aitizaz also announced that the internationally acclaimed University of Harvard had nominated Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry for its prestigious “Freedom of Law” award; an honor only conferred on Nelson Mandela and Throw Mel Marshall during the entire 200-year history of the University, while lawyers had also nominated Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry for Nobel Prize.