Reluctant Sindh govt wants its ‘own’ posted judges?


Despite the orders of the Sindh High Court (SHC)’s selection committee, the provincial government is reluctant to issue a formal approval for the appointment of 24 judicial magistrates/judges of the province’s lower judiciary.
In October 2010, 24 posts of judicial magistrates were announced vacant for which more than 2,000 candidates applied and appeared before the selection committee that comprised SHC Chief Justice Mushir Alam, senior pusine judge Justice Maqbool Baqar, Justice Athar Saeed, Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Gulzar.
The committee conducted written test and oral tests and declared 24 candidates successful. A letter was written to Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah through the Law Department to issue a formal approval, but even after four months and at least three reminders by the SHC, the chief minister is hesitant to obey the orders of the selection committee of the court which is authorised for these appointments.
 Reliable sources within the Sindh Law department told Pakistan Today that the provincial government is of the view that these appointments should be made through the Sindh Public Service Commission, as this can easily allow the ruling party to accommodate “favourite candidates” in Sindh’s lower judiciary.
Many party workers and close relatives of party high-ups have already been appointed to different departments of the provincial government. The Sindh government has also filed an appeal in the Supreme Court to give it the right to appoint lower judiciary judges through the Sindh Public Service Commission.
 The chief justice of Pakistan in his recent visit to Karachi had said the Sindh government’s action is illegal. The SHC chief justice had summoned Law Secretary Ghulam Nabi Shah and Advocate General Fatah Malak over the issue and both representatives of the provincial government has assured him that the approval for the appointments would be issued.
However, the provincial government later decided not to go ahead with the move.
The major reason behind more than 0.1 million cases pending in the lower judiciary of the province is lack of judges.