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    Jul 2010

    Default SC hearing petitions against 18th Amendment

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    ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammed Chaudhry said the President in Pakistan functions on the advice given to him by the Prime Minister, reported on Monday.

    CJ Iftikhar Chaudhry observed while heading a 17-member full court, hearing identical petitions challenging certain provisions of the 18th Amendment with particular reference to the formation of a judicial commission for appointment of judges to superior courts.

    The CJ said, ‘How can the Parliamentary Committee send the recommendations directly to the President.’

    “Our system of government is parliamentary,’ he added remarking, “The Prime Minister’s role has altogether been excluded in the process of judges’ appointment.”

    The Committee has been deputed with the power of the Prime Minister, the CJ Chaudhry observed.

    Continuing today with his arguments, the federal government’s counsel Wasim Sajjad said the PM’s powers were not given to the Committee; however, they have been slashed to some extent.

    Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday said the judicial role is secondary, adding the Parliamentary Committee has been empowered to veto the recommendations put up by the Judicial Commission.

    The decision on the procedure of judges’ appointments was given in a matter of one day, he added stressing the powers to dig up the graves have been delegated; now it is regardless whether six members do this or seven.

    Justice Ramday said it was not discussed for nine hours as stipulated in the Constitution.

    Justice Jawwad S Khawja said this Parliamentary Committee has been made superior to the Parliament.

    Justice Shakirullah added his remark, saying, ‘It is perilous to arm the Parliamentary Committee with the veto power.’

    Justice Jawwad S Khawja said, ‘The Committee doe not fit in our system.’

    Wasim Sajjad submitted that the Parliamentary Committee is a body discrete from the Parliament.

    It was not the Parliament that formed the Committee; instead, the Constitution formed it, Wasim remarked.

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