ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Bar Council (PBC), the regulator of the legal profession, appears to be at an impasse when it met on May 7 to address two issues – demolition of law firms in a neighborhood chic of the federal capital as well as the suspension of licenses.
No formal resolution was passed at the meeting on launching a national campaign as most participants opposed the proposal, a knowledgeable source told Dawn.
Although the issue was not on the agenda, two members raised the issue in their speeches, lamenting that the highest corps of lawyers deserted their brethren in Islamabad at a time when they were most need “our support”.
This explains why a resolution passed at the meeting insisted on a number of issues, but remained silent on the issue of law firms.
Islamabad lawyers ready to vacate district court chambers once new complex at IHC premises is ready
“Islamabad’s lawyers are in extreme pain and agony, but we have become silent spectators,” a source said quoting one of the speakers. He stressed that the PBC should send a strong message in favor of Islamabad-based lawyers who were facing cases in different courts, including anti-terrorism courts.
“It’s time for the PBC to take the lead,” suggested the other.
In March, the High Court in Islamabad suspended the licenses of a number of lawyers on the grounds that they had ransacked the offices of Chief Justice Athar Minallah and made threats to burn down a police station during the attack. a demonstration against the demolition of law firms.
Licenses were suspended after a group of protesting lawyers broke into the chambers of the IHC Chief Justice in February, chanting slogans against the judiciary as well as the Capital Development Authority over the demolition of their chambers . They also forced several judges out of their courtrooms.
At the PBC’s May 7 meeting, one of the members lamented that, despite assurances, the council had not even called a convention where lawyers could have expressed their concerns about the episode from the pitch. soccer.
“The Pakistan Bar Council and associations have left Islamabad lawyers in a mess,” said one speaker.
A majority of participants are not in favor of adopting a resolution on the issue. Some of them observed that the Islamabad Bar Association (IBA) itself was divided on the issue of launching a campaign against the judiciary.
The IBA has entered into negotiations with the capital’s administration to dissuade it from carrying out its decision to demolish the law firms on the premises of the district court.
“We will only support them if they take the lead and campaign,” they said, reminding the rally that the case was pending.
The Islamabad Bar Association had filed a petition for review with the Supreme Court seeking the overturn of the Supreme Court’s directive of March 2 authorizing the Capital Development Authority to demolish law firms on the area’s football field F-8 if they were not released within two months. .
The petition was moved on the grounds that the order contained errors “floating on the surface” of the record since it failed to notice an order of August 24, 2007 by a larger Supreme Court bench that had suspended the move. from the District Court of Sector F-8 to G-10.
Fareed Hussain Kaif, who heads the Islamabad Bar Association, said lawyers were ready to leave their practice at the district court premises as soon as the new complex at the IHC premises was ready.
“We are even ready to contribute from our side for the speedy completion of the project,” he said.
Mr Kaif lamented the ransacking of the IHC Chief Justice’s office, saying the IBA was ready to enter into negotiations to find a solution.
“We have no sympathy for the elements that have taken the High Court by storm, but we want a solution to be found as the legal community in the capital has become a spectacle in the eyes of the nation.”
Posted in Dawn on May 11, 2021