HYDERABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry has said that the entire nation reposed trust in judiciary and lawyers and it is now time for them to pay back.
‘It’s not merely a question of dispensation of justice at the grassroots, but of the survival of the system itself,’ Justice Iftikhar said at a dinner hosted in his honour on Friday by the new office-bearers of the Sindh High Court Bar Association’s Hyderabad chapter.
He said consultations were in progress with all stake-holders for a long- and short-term national judicial policy. He said the draft of the policy was being discussed at all levels and criticism would be welcomed.
He said a mechanism was being worked out to check corruption by court staff and anyone found guilty would lose his job.
He said different systems were prevailing in different parts of the country. ‘You have seen people being flogged in bazaars. Can educated people and lawyers afford such a system where humanity is not respected?’ he asked.
He said people had suffered over the past 60 years and it was time for the judiciary and lawyers to solve their problems.
The chief justice paid tribute to members of the civil society and media and lawyers for giving sacrifices over the past two years during the struggle for rule of law and supremacy of the Constitution. He praised HCBA Hyderabad chief Qazi Abdul Sattar and local lawyers for playing an important role in the struggle.
‘The 170 million people of this country have pinned hopes on the judges and lawyers and they have to prove their mettle in all fairness and with faithfulness so that people get rights guaranteed to them under conventions and the statutes,’ he said. He sought cooperation from the bench and the bar to ensure that people got justice at the grassroots level.
The chief justice said he was aware of the problems faced by judicial officers. ‘Once the policy is unanimously framed everyone will see our goal being achieved.’