September 23 to be observed as Chaudhry Iftikhar Day.

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Lawyers say Zardari, government hindering Iftikhar’s reinstatement

RAWALPINDI: The PPP government and President Asif Ali Zardari are hindrance to restoration of deposed chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, charged Lahore High Court Bar Association (LHCBA), Rawalpindi bench, President Sardar Asmatullah while addressing a press conference on the high court premises here on Thursday.

Former vice-president of Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Mohammad Ikram Chaudhry, Rawalpindi District Bar Association (RDBA) President Sardar Tariq Masood and LHCBA, Rawalpindi bench, General Secretary Malik Siddique Awan were also present on the occasion.

Asmat said that September 23 would be observed as Ch Iftikhar Day and on that day the lawyers would hold a rally in the city, while on 24th September they would invite the deposed CJP to an Iftar dinner at the bar. He said they would also invite the Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif to address the bar after Eid. He criticized the government’s pick and choose policy on reinstating the judges and termed it illegal and a deviation from the spirit of the Constitution. He said the deposed judges, who had taken oath, should have waited a little more because the way the government was reinstating them was beneath their dignity. He said if the government did not reinstate Justice Iftikhar, they would again stage a long march and continue it till restoration of all the judges.

Meanwhile, the local lawyers also observed a complete boycott of courts and staged a protest rally at Kutchery Chowk demanding that the government restore the deposed judges. At the RDBA general body meeting the lawyers condemned US attacks in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and said that despite government warnings, the US troops stationed in Afghanistan were firing missiles inside Pakistan, which was a naked aggression against a sovereign country. Ikram Chaudhry said that the lawyers were united and would continue their movement till restoration of Justice Iftikhar.

He said when the movement was started last year; the lawyers belonging to various political parties not only joined it, but also struggled for judges’ restoration. He was positive that this spirit would also continue in future. He said if the lawyers remained united then no once could damage their noble cause.

The issue of lawyers joining the government also came under discussion. Senior lawyer Taufiq Asif said that though the bar constitution did not stop anyone from taking up government jobs, it was morally wrong that bar office-bears should accept government jobs.

Secretary General of RDBA Sajid Tanoli, about whom some lawyers said he had joined the federal council, told the bar members, that he had not accepted any government job.

link: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2008%5C09%5C19%5Cstory_19-9-2008_pg7_13

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