ISLAMABAD: The Parliamentary Committee should amend its rules to play an effective role in the appointment of judges, said former chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the PPP leader said the rules of the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) be revisited and a seniority-cum-fitness criterion be established. A multi-dimensional appointment criterion be put in place so as to reflect the federal diversity.
He stated that the appointment of judges of the superior judiciary has historically been a ticklish question. The question has defied all-encompassing solutions despite various judgments, resolutions of the bar and the introduction of Article 175A of the Constitution, through the 18th Amendment.
The 18th Amendment brought a homogeneous mix of the judiciary, executive, representative of the elected body of the legal fraternity and a retired judge, in the Judicial Commission. It provided parliamentary oversight through a bi-partisan Parliamentary Committee consisting of equal members of the treasury and opposition.
The Parliamentary Committee was rendered ineffective through a series of judgments. There is once again mounting concern, in particular, within the legal fraternity on the mode and criteria for such appointments. It is correct that seniority and merit are the main drivers of such appointments, but it must be kept in mind that the Supreme Court is the apex court of the country.
He said that Article 1 of the Constitution provides that Pakistan shall be a federal republic, therefore, such a Court should, as far as possible, reflect the ethnic, cultural and religious diversity of the federation.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022