The Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) on Thursday proposed elevation of Lahore High Court (LHC) Chief Justice Mansoor Ali Shah to a Supreme Court judge.
Justice Nisar-led commission meeting also recommended Justice Yawar Ali Khan—a member of a special court hearing a treason case against former military ruler Pervez Musharraf—as the new LHC chief justice. He may work as LHC CJ until October.
It is important to mention here that Justice Shah, appointed as a LHC judge on September 15, 2009, was appointed as the chief justice in June 2015. The judge not only introduced a number of reforms for the betterment of the justice system in Punjab but also strived to regulate bar associations of the province.
If he is promoted by the commission, Justice Shah will remain a SC judge until November 2027. Moreover, he could then also become the chief justice of Pakistan for three years in the future.
The Supreme Court will regain its full strength with his elevation, as currently, one seat is vacant in the apex court.
However, according to a seniority list, Justice Asif Saeed Khosa will be the next CJP. After his retirement, Justice Gulzar Ahmad, Justice Umar Ata Bandial and Justice Qazi Faez Isa will work as the country’s top judge.
If Justice Shah is elevated to the apex court, after Justice Isa’s retirement, he will be appointed as the CJP.
Meanwhile, the JCP also proposed six names for the appointment of Sindh High Court (SHC) additional judges, recommending two district and sessions court judges Ishrat Ali Shah and Kausar Sultana Hussain, and four lawyers—Adnan Iqbal Chaudhry, Amjid Ali Sahito, Agha Faisal and Shamsuddin Abbasi—for appointment as additional judges for a year.
At the moment, 33 judges are working in the SHC while its total strength is 40; however, after these appointments, one seat will fall vacant.
The JCP’s recommendations will be sent to the Parliamentary Committee on Judges Appointment for consideration.
It is pertinent to mention here that almost two weeks ago, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar had proposed the elevation of Justice Shah to the Supreme Court. The chief justice had also proposed LHC’s senior judge Justice Muhammad Yawar Ali to take over as the new chief justice of the Lahore High Court