Govt in a dilemma on CJP’s extension.

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LAHORE: The ruling PML-N is finding it rather difficult to take a decision on the issue of extending the service of Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry for 18 months, the period during which he remained under suspension in the Gen Musharraf era.
He is due to retire by the middle of December this year.
Knowledgeable sources say that at one stage important ruling party leaders were in favour of moving a resolution in parliament in support of Justice Chaudhry. This was to be followed by a notification.
However, because of unknown reasons there is now a shift in the thinking of the relevant leaders.
It is said that the PML-N leadership thinks that extension in the service of Justice Chaudhry may create problems for the government and it will be left with no option but to extend the services of many other judges who also remained under suspension but then stood retired on attaining the age of superannuation.
Constitutional experts are of the view that extension in the service of Justice Chaudhry will violate the Constitution as well as some judgments of the apex court. One judgment of the apex court in a case of a civil servant who sought extension in service for the period he remained under suspension said accepting the plea would open a Pandora’s box.
The Chief Justice of Pakistan had been suspended by Gen Pervez Musharraf on November 3, 2007. However, he was reinstated on March 22, 2009.
Lawyers across the country had launched a strong movement against the removal of Justice Chaudhry and other judges. The PML-N had also played an important role in the movement. The ultimate long march to Islamabad, which forced the military leadership to use its influence and have the judges restored, was led by Mian Nawaz Sharif.
The PPP government had reached an agreement with the PML-N for the reinstatement of all sacked judges and it was on the basis of this commitment that the PML-N joined the PPP-led government. However, the PML-N ministers quit the cabinet after about 40 days when President Zardari failed to honour his commitment.
Justice Abdul Hameed Dogar worked as chief justice in the absence of Justice Chaudhry. It was after Justice Dogar’s retirement that Justice Chaudhry resumed as the CJP.
Informed sources say that the PML-N leadership is not happy with the kind of judgments being given by Justice Chaudhry. However, PML-N sources say they want the judiciary to work independently, without fearing or favouring anyone.
Lawyers are of the view that Justice Chaudhry should retire on his due date.

link: http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/national/21-Jul-2013/govt-in-a-dilemma-on-cjp-s-extension

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