Non-starter commissions

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The government has constituted a judicial commission for enquiring into the murder of journalist Saleem Shahzad for the second time which is a non-starter as a Supreme Court judge was appointed its chairman without consultation with Chief Justice of Supreme Court. There is a saying in Punjabi that milk was given with addition of ‘maingans’ of a goat i.e. spoiling the milk.

The government has formed a habit to formulate judicial commissions and nominating sitting judges on it without bothering to consult with the Chief Justice to assure availability of nominated judges. In fact, the government does not want to constitute an independent commission with a malafide intention to act as a spoiler to render such commissions questionable from the very beginning.

This kind of wily behaviour is unbecoming of a responsible government, which claims to have installed an independent judiciary which in fact it was forced to do with a heavy heart due to public pressure. The thinly disguised steps of the government do not augur well for a workable arrangement with the Apex Court.

MUHAMMAD YAQOOB BHATTI

Lahore