Pakistan's Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar on Tuesday tabled the Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Bill, 2023 in the National Assembly aimed to limit the discretionary powers to take suo motu notice by the Chief Justice of Pakistan. The house has sent the proposed bill to the Standing Committee on Law and Justice for further deliberations and approval today, March 29.
The bill has already been approved by the federal cabinet. The government bill states that a committee comprising three senior judges will decide on the initiation of suo-motu notice. The Supreme Court Justices, Syed Mansoor Ali Shah and Jamal Khan Mandokhail had earlier urged for reconsidering the Chief Justice's what they called "one-man show" power, stating that the institution could not be dependent on the lone decision of one man.
The two had made the comments in a thorough dissenting note for the top court's March 1 ruling regarding holding elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where the two provincial assemblies have been dissolved, which was published on Monday hours after the SC took up Imran Khan-led PTI's appeal challenging the postponement of elections in Punjab.
The Justices argued that the CJP did not have the authority to reorganise benches without the approval of the respective judges and that the suo motu proceedings regarding the provincial elections stood dismissed by a majority of 4-3. PTI Chairman Imran Khan responded to the law by saying it was only authorised to put pressure on the Supreme Court Earlier, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, in his speech to the National Assembly, praised the dissenting note of the two judges as a "ray of hope", and urged for pertinent legislation in response. (AIR NEWS)