ISLAMABAD - Justice Qazi Faez Isa, senior puisne judge of Supreme Court of Pakistan, Friday wrote a letter to Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial about posts of judges, lying vacant since February 2022.
Justice Isa stated in his letter, “The Judicial Commission of Pakistan with regard to nominations to the Supreme Court comprises nine members including the Chief Justice who acts as the Commission’s chairman.”
He wrote, “Over 50,000 cases have accumulated in the Supreme Court. The Chief Justice and 16 judges constitute the Supreme Court. However, there are five vacancies in the Supreme Court, which works out to 726 lost days. It pains me to state that the cases filed in the Supreme Court are unlikely to ever get decided if vacancies are not filled-in.”
“The people of Pakistan have invested heavily in the Supreme Court, which employs about 700 staff and has a considerable budget. Therefore, it is not understandable why the Supreme Court is working at a 30 percent reduced capacity. Every passing day that the five vacancies remain unfilled adds to the existing mountain of cases, threatening to render it insurmountable, which may leave the Supreme Court dysfunctional. The same staff and money which would serve a full court also serves a truncated one, therefore, there is a needless haemorrhaging of resources,” said the letter.
It added “The constitution requires that expeditious justice be ensured and this responsibility falls upon the Supreme Court, of which you are the chief justice. We must not let down the people of Pakistan, erode their confidence in the Supreme Court and continue to waste their hard earned money”.
Justice Isa continued, “Sir, I have repeatedly called upon you to do your constitutional duty, and let the members of the Commission do theirs. Therefore, please convene a meeting of the Commission immediately to enable the Commission to nominate judges to the Supreme Court.”
Justice Gulzar retired on 1st February 2022. Since his retirement, 239 days have passed but no judge has been appointed in his place. Similarly, Justice Qazi Amin Ahmed retired on 25th March, 2022. 187 days have passed after his retirement, Justice Maqbool Baqir retired on 4th April, 2022 and 177 days passed. Similarly, Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel retired on 13th July, 2022 and 77 days passed, and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah retired on 13th August, 2022 and days passed are 46. Thus a total 726 days have passed after the retirement of five judges and no judges appointment has been made in these days