SC decides to hear pleas challenging military courts


The Supreme Court on Thursday approved for hearing petitions challenging the establishment of military courts in the country.

A three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Nasirul Mulk, will hear the petitions from Jan 28.

Earlier on Jan 7, a petition challenging the establishment of military courts in the country was filed in the apex court by Moulvi Iqbal Haider. The petition had stated that the amendment made in the Constitution to establish military courts in the country is against its basic structure.

The second petition against the 21st Amendment filed by Pakistan Justice Party Chairman Munsif Malik through Advocate Ikram Chaudhry on Jan 9 had pleaded that the political government and military establishment had resurrected the doctrine of necessity which was buried forever by the Supreme Court through the landmark July 31, 2009, judgment holding the Nov 3, 2007 emergency illegal.

The petition had said the armed forces had been given a free hand to interfere in the judicial system without having experience and understanding of law. The military courts have been given a status they are not entitled to under the constitution. These courts will function under the dictates of their superiors since their objective will be to punish the accused and not to dispense justice.

The petitioner had requested the Supreme Court to declare the 21st Amendment and creation of military courts against the salient features of the constitution which guaranteed fundamental rights of fair trial.