Tag Archives: Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry

Judicial Coup in Pakistan

The views expressed in this piece are not those of PTH. This article was sent to us as a contrarian viewpoint and in the interest of promoting a debate, we are posting it. Some of the contents are controversial; and we hope that the readers will correct the perceptions about the judicial activism that is supported by many people in Pakistan. (PTH Editors)

Once a democratic champion, the Chief Justice now undermines the elected government. (WSJ-OPINION ASIA)

By DAVID B. RIVKIN JR. AND LEE A. CASEY

RivkinCasey

When U.S. President Barack Obama sharply challenged a recent Supreme Court decision in his State of the Union address, prompting a soto voce rejoinder from Justice Samuel Alito, nobody was concerned that the contretemps would spark a blood feud between the judiciary and the executive. The notion that judges could or would work to undermine a sitting U.S. president is fundamentally alien to America’s constitutional system and political culture. Unfortunately, this is not the case in Pakistan.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry, the country’s erstwhile hero, is the leading culprit in an unfolding constitutional drama. It was Mr. Chaudhry’s dismissal by then-President Pervez Musharraf in 2007 that triggered street protests by lawyers and judges under the twin banners of democracy and judicial independence. This effort eventually led to Mr. Musharraf’s resignation in 2008. Yet it is now Mr. Chaudhry himself who is violating those principles, having evidently embarked on a campaign to undermine and perhaps even oust President Asif Ali Zardari. (image above – Associated Press) Continue reading

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An alternative view – “Don’t get fooled”

AN alternative view of the recent historical judgement by the Supreme Court of Pakistan:

Pakistan is a country where the Supreme Court building was attacked by hundreds of activists of a ruling political party. Judges ran for their lives and requested the military to intervene, which declined. The man behind this unique display of democracy in action, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, was never punished. He went on later to hijack a plane carrying the army chief. Today, he is considered a champion of independent judiciary. We have a president and political party in Karachi cleared of blatant charges of accumulating unexplained wealth and running armed militias. The best part is that 14 judges aggrieved by a former president want to try him. This is a messed up system that needs to be corrected.

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