CJP’s affirmation

CHIEF Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar, on Tuesday, affirmed that he has no political ambitions or agenda to follow. While heading a three-member bench of the apex court hearing a suo moto case about increase in prices of drugs, he said that what he wants to see is the availability of clean drinking water, basic health facilities and food to the people of Pakistan.
We have been emphasising in these columns that all suo moto notice of the Chief Justice or other members of the judiciary must not be seen as an encroachment in the domain of the executive. There is also no reason to attribute motives to the judges, forcing them to make clarifications every now and then about what their actions mean. There is trichotomy of powers in the Constitution and the law with necessary checks and balances. If the judiciary takes notice of undue increase in prices of drugs, an issue which is being agitated by people of Pakistan, forces bottled-water companies and milk-providers to ensure quality or pushes relevant authorities to keep a check on food adulteration, unhygienic meat being sold in the market then these actions should be seen as complimentary in realisation of the cherished objective of good governance — which incompetent governments are not able to provide. While the court is empowered to interpret laws and its decision to declare a disqualified person ineligible to become president of a political party might be within the bounds of the law but throwing PML (N) out of arena of Senate elections as an entity, as an implication of the verdict, which was avoidable as per some legal brains, is being agitated. It would be in the fitness of things to spare cases with political connotations close to general election.

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