Judiciary strongest backer of democracy: CJ Iftikhar
01 September, 2013
LAHORE: Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has said in a democratic setup of Pakistan, every institution has to recognise and respect of constitutional norms.
He added that three main organs of the state – the Judiciary, executive and the legislature – can not transcend beyond their constitutional circumference through abuse of authority.
Addressing the roll signing ceremony of new Supreme Court lawyers on Saturday, the chief justice of Pakistan said the success and efficacy of a democratic system, inter alia, depended on the independence of judiciary.
He said the judiciary being a custodian of the Constitution had been specifically equipped with the power of judicial review to check the arbitrary exercise of power by any authority or institution. He said the Supreme Court being at the apex of judicial hierarchy in Pakistan and as final arbiter of constitutional and legal controversies has endeavoured to bring legal and judicial reformation through prudent interpretation of laws through various landmark judgments and formulation of judicial policies.
He said the National Judicial Policy, revised from time to time, in consultation with all the stakeholders at national and international level sets out guidelines for the judges and lawyers for prompt and fair dispensation of justice in Pakistan.
He said it was now the duty of the lawyers to follow them and facilitate the courts in securing justice at the grass root level.
He said the hard work and efficient performance of courts had strengthened public trust in the justice system of Pakistan and more and more people are approaching the courts for resolution of their disputes and redressal of grievances. The chief justice said a strengthened and independent judicial system plays assertive and decisive role for promotion of rule of law which is a basic substance of democracy and necessitates the supremacy of the Constitution, equality before law and equal protection of law.
It is the statutory and constitutional responsibility of judiciary to safeguard fundamental rights and restore entitlements to their owners and grant relief to the aggrieved, he added.
The chief justice of Pakistan said Judiciary had a definite role to play for effective administration of justice for the establishment of a just society, based on respect for law.
He said he felt privileged that the Pakistani judicial system was the strongest backer of constitutional principles and democratic norms. He said the judiciary enjoyed full confidence and faith of legal fraternity, other institutions, media as well as public at large.