By Majeed Gill
BAHAWALPUR, July 27: Deposed chief justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry said here on Sunday the lawyers’ movement had mustered support at the global level and a number of international bar associations had joined the campaign.
Addressing a lawyers’ convention held under the auspices of the local high court bar association, he said the issue had been ‘internationalised’ and with the masses behind the deposed judges, the movement had reached a decisive juncture. “The people know that only an independent judiciary can guarantee good governance and help solve economic problems,” he said.
The convention was scheduled to be held at 7pm on Saturday, but the motorcade of the chief justice and other judges took 15 hours to reach here from Multan, making brief stopovers in Shujaabad, Jalalpur Peerwala and Lodhran.
Justice Iftikhar praised high court judge Justice Jawad S. Khwaja and civil judge Saeed Khursheed Ahmad for taking a principled stand and quitting their jobs. He said Bahawalpur and Multan bars should confer the title of ‘Farzand-i-Bahawalpur or -Multan’ on Saeed Khursheed. Mr Khursheed, who was posted in Bahawalpur as a civil judge, was the first member of the subordinate judiciary to resign in protest.
Supreme Court Bar Association president Aitzaz Ahsan warned that if the judges were not reinstated by Aug 14, lawyers might decide to launch a civil disobedience movement. He urged Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to fulfill his promise and reinstate the judges.
Prominent among the speakers were Jahangir Arshad, Ali Ahmad Kurd, Munir Malik, Hamid Khan and Malik Mohammad Aslam.
People faced severe inconvenience when hundreds of policemen deployed for the caravan’s security blocked several city roads hours before the arrival of the motorcade.