Home News Analysis The lawyers’ strike and how the government should deal with it

The lawyers’ strike and how the government should deal with it

In a latest development, the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) and the Provincial Bar Councils announced a strike on June 14 over references filed by the government against Supreme Court judge Qazi Faez Isa, and two other high court judges.

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According to local media reports, a meeting of Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) and all provincial bar councils was held at the Supreme Court to ponder over the references made against judges. The participants exchanged views on a future strategy in this regard and made some key decisions.

The analysts believe that such a demand is reckless since  there must be no discrimination or biasness when it comes to law.

The PBC chairman stated that the participants of the meeting condemned Law Minister Farogh Naseem and Attorney General Anwar Mansoor Khan, and demanded them to step down from their respective posts. PBC vice chairman, Amjad Shah, demanded the withdrawal of reference against Justice Isa. The analysts believe that such a demand is reckless since there must be no discrimination or biasness when it comes to law.

The President has sent a reference against Justice Isa of the SC for alleged misconduct. According to sources, Justice Isa did not mention the foreign assets of his wife in his official document. According to legal experts, the said judge was not legally bound to mention the assets of his independent wife. Salman Akram Raja, Advocate SC, stated in a twitter post:

“Wealth statement required of a person mandates disclosures of assets held by a spouse only if these were obtained through funds provided by that person & are held as benami assets. Assets purchased by a spouse in her own right are to be disclosed only in her wealth statement.”

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Moreover, the opinion is divided with regard to implications of the reference filed against Justice Isa. Some analysts believe that the government is going to face a tough time since it has decided to question the integrity of a judge who is known for being upright and tough on spy agencies and their role in the political process.

Prominent lawyer Babar Sattar pointed out that the case of Justice Isa has been dragged out into the media, which is a violation of his fundamental rights. Babar wrote his opinion in several tweets.

However, prominent analyst Sabir Shakir and Arif Hameed Bhatti maintain that a reference has been filed as per the law and the honorable judge has been given a due right to defend himself. “There is no question of protest or violation of law. Has the government breached any law? On what point, the lawyers shall call a strike?” they asked.

PBC vice chairman, Amjad Shah, demanded the withdrawal of reference against Justice Isa.

The opposition parties are already bashing the government for targeting a judge who was critical of the PTI because of its “dharna” culture and the role of spy agencies in politics. Babar Sattar disclosed at a TV show how there are forces creating controversies against Justice Isa, shunning his chances of becoming the CJP in 2023. Therefore, efforts are being made to fire him.

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An organized movement led by lawyers and backed by the opposition parties may create some serious problems for the government, which is already facing several challenges on economics fronts. Therefore, Dr. Moeed Pirzada of 92 News, suggested that the government must react sensibly and not create any further problems for itself.

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