National Judicial Policy 2009

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National Judicial Policy 2009
A year for focus on Justice at the Grassroot Level

National Judicial (Policy Making) Committee

Published by: Secretariat, Law & Justice Commission of Pakistan, Supreme Court Building, Islamabad

1. 2. 3. Justice at the Grassroot Level Executive Summery National Judicial Policy a. b. c. d. Independence of Judiciary Misconduct Eradication of Corruption Expeditious Disposal of Cases • Short Term Measures I ii • 4. Annexure Criminal Cases Civil Cases The Chief Justice of Pakistan Secretary, NJPMC 1 5 11 11 13 14 16 16 16 23 28 31

Long Term Measures


Justice at the Grassroot Level
The Chief Justice of Pakistan/Chairman, National Judicial (Policy Making) Committee (NJPMC) in his introductory speeches and remarks during the 4-day meeting (18–19 April & 16–17 May 2009) of the NJPMC, made important observations, the substance of which follows: “The Meeting of the NJPMC has been convened at a critical moment of our national history. There has occurred a gradual deterioration in the law and order situation and parts of the country are experiencing militancy and violence, causing the displacement of hundreds of thousands of innocent people - men, women, children and elderly. These are difficult times. We face existential threats. But I do not think that the difficulties are insurmountable. We are a tenacious nation, have demonstrated, more than once, our strength and ability to face challenges. The lawyers' movement for restoration of independent-minded judges and supremacy of law/Constitution is a case in point. The movement for a grand cause was thronged by enthusiastic groups including civil society organisations, professional groups, political parties and students, etc. In the evening of 15 March 2009, the movement transformed itself into a mini-revolution. It demonstrated the agility and determination of the masses to stand by the Constitution and dispensation of power under this supreme law. It emboldened me to say today, that together we could face challenges and convert them into opportunities. I have full faith in the ability of the people to rise to the occasion and chalk out a future course of action, based on democratic values and constitutional principles. The restoration of 3 November (2007) judiciary has ushered in a new era: an era of hope that political dispensation in the country and 1


governance shall be in accordance with the constitutional principles. The people of Pakistan have reposed great confidence in the ability of the judiciary to redress their grievances and grant them relief. They have very high expectations of the courts to settle their disputes, restore their rights/entitlements and maintain peace in society by sending the guilty behind bars. I thank the people for believing on us! We must strive to meet their expectations. This is time to repay our debt to the nation. We could do so by addressing the perennial twin-problems of “backlog” and “delays” in the system of administration of justice. To achieve the objective, we need to formulate new judicial policy. I had asked the Secretariat of the NJPMC to prepare a framework of action for clearing the backlog and expeditious disposal of cases. The draft is before you. Let us examine it and evolve a strategy for the purpose. I want the active participation of all stakeholders of the justice sector, essentially the members of the bench and the bar and also related agencies viz police/prison department and prosecution branch. The Policy that we ultimately approve would be one that has broad ownership. That is why extensive consultations have been carried out to get the viewpoint of judges, lawyers, litigants and others. The Policy seeks to achieve its objectives, by efficient utilisation of existing resources. We have to operate by remaining within the given legal/procedural framework. The laws are indeed time-tested. Given...
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