- Justice Isa says CJP Bandial did not dictate decisions that were taken by JCP and left meeting abruptly.
- Eyes of nation are transfixed on the JCP as people have constititional right to know what was decided, he says.
- Says publicly released minutes of meeting will stem unnecessary speculation and misreporting about decisions.
ISLAMABAD: Justice Qazi Faez Isa on Thursday stressed that Judicial Commission of Pakistan’s (JCP) decisions made on appointment of judges be released publicly.
In a letter written to the JCP members and Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, who is also the chairman of the body, Justice Isa said that the JCP met today to consider the five nominees recommended by the chief justice.
“After a detailed discussion the majority of the honourable members of the JCP, that is the honourable Justice Sardar Tariq Masood, honourable Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar, honourable Attorney-General Ashtar Ausaf Ali, representative of the Pakistan Bar Council the honourable Akhtar Hussain and myself decided to reject the nominations of the three junior judges of the Sindh High Court and one junior judge of the Lahore High Court,” said Justice Isa.
On the elevation of chief justice of the Peshawar High Court to the apex court, Justice Isa said that the body decided that as he was not the senior-most judge “his name may be considered when placed alongside those of his peers, that is, with the Chief Justices of the other High Courts and senior-most judges, with the provision of comparable data”.
“It was also decided that the Constitution did not permit appointments to ‘anticipated’ vacancies,” said Justice Isa.
However, the judge shared that Justice Bandial “did not dictate the decisions that were taken, and left the meeting quite abruptly, followed by Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan”.
He added that after the chairman’s departure, it was left to the temporarily appointed acting secretary to draw up the minutes of the decisions that were taken, adding that this was his first time doing so.
“The eyes of the nation are transfixed on the JCP and they have a constitutional right to know what was decided. Therefore, the acting secretary should immediately release this decision to the media, which will also stem unnecessary speculation and misreporting as the meeting was held behind closed doors. It is expected that the detailed minutes will accurately reflect all that transpired,” said Justice Isa.
JCP rejects CJP Bandial’s nominees
Earlier today, sources had told Geo News that JCP has rejected Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial’s nominated judges of higher courts for their appointment to the Supreme Court.
Sources said that the chief justice, Justice Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah voted in favour of the nominees, while Justice (retd) Sarmad Jalal Usmani voted in favour of three judges from LHC and voted against the SHC nominees, sources said.
However, according to sources, their votes were less as Justice Qazi Faez Isa, Justice Tariq Masood, Attorney-General Ashtar Ausaf Ali, and Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar voted against all the five nominees.
Official statement mentions no vote held
On the other hand, the official statement issued of the meeting said that the JCP chairman, after detailed discussion, proposed to “defer the meeting in order to enable the Hon’ble Chief Justice of Pakistan to place additional information and data about those already proposed and if he considers appropriate, add more names to the list of proposees for consideration by the JCP”.
“The proposal to defer the meeting was supported by Mr Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan, Mr Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, Mr Justice (Retd) Sarmad Jalal Osmany and the Attorney General for Pakistan. It was accordingly decided to defer the meeting. The date of the next meeting will be communicated to the Members of the Judicial Commission by the Chairman, JCP,” said the statement.
The statement also said that the meeting was attended by seven Members of the JCP in person while Justice Qazi Faez Isa and the attorney general attended via Zoom.