The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has directed the Federal Government to ensure that all the formalities are completed and construction of a state-of-the-art judicial complex on the vacant five-acre plot is commenced before the date fixed.
Chief Justice Athar Minallah gave these orders while hearing case regarding early construction of judicial complex to house district and civil courts, lawyers chambers.
At present these courts are working in the court’s own words “deplorable and inhuman conditions.”
Secretary Ministry of Law, Interior Secretary, Chief Commissioner and other senior officials of the ICT and CDA also appeared before the court.
The Secretary, Ministry of Interior informed that pursuant to directions given by the Prime Minister, the Federal Government has given top priority to establishing state of the art judicial complex at the vacant plot so that the District courts could be shifted from F-8, the court noted in its order.
The IHC chief justice noted appallingly deplorable conditions at the District courts which “speak volumes for the apathy and convoluted priorities of executive branch of the State since last four decades.”
The unimaginable inhumane working environment has a profound effect on dispensation of justice, it further said.
The neglect of public functionaries is obvious from the unregulated and illegal construction around the commercial area where the courts have been established.
“Ironically, the administration has informed the Registrar of this Court in writing that such illegal and unregulated construction is a serious threat to security,” the court noted.
The District courts are the most important tier of the judicial branch because it mostly serves those who are not privileged to be part of the elites.
Two five-acre plots have been allotted for construction of judicial complex, the court noted adding on one plot IHC is temporarily set up and the two plots will be sufficient to accommodate district courts and needs of the lawyers as well as litigants.
The Ministry of Law and Justice will plan and inform this Court on the next date fixed regarding the facilities it intends to establish on the separate vacant five acre plot for the use of the litigants and lawyers.
It is noted that the planning and execution thereof will be subject to compliance with the enforced laws, inter-alia, the Capital Development Authority Ordinance, 1960 and the regulations made there under, the order said.
The court also directed Ministry of Law and Justice to share and consult with the Islamabad Bar Council its proposed plan for establishing facilities for the litigants and lawyers on the vacant plot earmarked for this purpose.