KARACHI: A petition in the Sindh High Court on Monday requested the federal law secretary to restore Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry as Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) so he administer the oath to the president-elect as is the requirement under the Constitution of Pakistan.
Sohail Hameed maintained that the restoration of those judges who have either refused or were not offered the chance to take oath under the Provisional Constitutional Ordinance (PCO) of 2007 have argued that they can be restored, and the same applies to the apex court. In effect, this means that Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry is still CJP, said Hameed in his petition. Citing the president-elect as a respondent, Hameed said that since Asif Ali Zardari had won the elections on Saturday, he was required to take oath administered by the CJP as per Article 42. In the case of Tikka Muhammad Iqbal versus the Federation of Pakistan in January, the Supreme Court ruled that the case of those judges who declined oath or were not offered oath under the PCO were ‘a past and closed transaction’. However, the acting CJP had set aside the argument as those judges have been restored, argued Hameed.
He asked the court to direct the federal secretary for law to act in accordance with the Constitution of Pakistan and issue a notification restoring the CJP, arguing his position would be of no legal effect unless administered by CJ Iftikhar Chaudhry. He also asked the court restrain the president-elect from acting as President of Pakistan unless Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry administers the oath. staff report