Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Supreme Court tells us to shut up

In its wisdom the Supreme Court has just announced a ban on:

"Discussions, comments or write-ups which are likely to interfere with the legal process, ridicule, scandalize or malign the court or any of its judges or touching the merits of the case are strictly prohibited and violation in this regard shall be dealt with under the law relating to contempt of court”.


However your Blogger, being a law abiding citizen, still feels at liberty to express his opinion – not, of course, on the proceedings of the case which is now banned – but on the role of the judiciary in Pakistan.

For fifty years, from the days of Justice Munir, the judiciary has opted to play a subservient role to every dictatorship we have had. Commonsense tells us that respect can not be demanded but has to be earned. Unfortunately in recent years the senior judiciary has done very little to deserve respect from the Pakistani public.

For starters, as I mentioned in a recent blog, we require them to behave as judges ought to. The principles of natural justice and law demand that:

"Justice should not only be done but manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done"
(Lord Hewart, C.J - R. v. Sussex Justices, 1924)

"Judges, like Caesar's wife must be above suspicion"
(Lord Bowen, J - Leeson v. General Council of Medical Education & Registration, 1889)

Justice must be rooted in confidence and confidence is destroyed when right-minded people go away thinking 'the Judge was biased'
(Lord Denning, Master of the Rolls - Metropolitan Properties Ltd. v. Lannon, 1969)

If the present lot of judges in the Supreme Court show themselves worthy of our respect, then they shall, of course, be entitled to it. The ball is in their court, until then we – the citizens - must reserve our judgment on them.


Anonymous said...

Every religous person in Pakistan is a crook, Hindus included.

This Bhagwandas was in some 'Aitakaf' type Hindu practise in India, when the Iftikhar was dismissed. He came along, and actualy seems to be siding with the military.

Anonymous said...

The Supreme Court looks ridiculous creating a "code of conduct".

AAS said...

And the person who made the first comment on this post is an idiot. :)

Anonymous said...

I am convinced that Musharraf will risk destroying the Supreme Court, as well as Pakistan, simply to hang onto power.

Today columnist Kamran Shafi says that one of Mush’s closest aides has told him that his leader has declared: “I cannot be defeated” and in reference to the CJ, “He will have to say goodbye”!

I get the feeling it is Kargil revisted

Anonymous - Catch22

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