Judiciary and government fail to restore democratic means in Pakistan. By Sher Gondal
18 Jul 2012
Lawyers’ movement for restoration of judges met historical success resulting into end of military rule and establishment of democratic government that is almost completing its tenure by next year. People attached great hopes in the democratic government and judiciary. Unfortunately government and judiciary have not come up to expectations of the people. Things deteriorated beyond limits and there is no possibility that circumstances improve in near future. Central government has destroyed major institutions of the country like railway, PIA and steel mills that were suffering continuous loss. Similarly other departments of provincial government have stopped functioning according to their charter of duties thus increasing woes of the public. After the movement major change came into the conduct of lawyers. They have emerged as pressure group in the country and in order to please them Federal and Provincial governments give them handsome amounts from public exchequers. These funds mostly are misused by bar leaders to serve their own interests. The lawyers’ leaders using their influence take decisions from courts of their own choice and if some judge does not accommodate them he is harassed and brought to disrepute and finally posted out to some other station. It appears that courts specially subordinate courts judicial officers are high jacked by local lawyers’ leaders. The same situation prevails at Mandi Bahauddin district and its subdivision Phalia and Malikwal; Cases are delayed for no fault of parties. One senior advocate Ishtiaq Ranjha held lawyers, judges and police equally responsible for delay in disposal of cases. He said lawyers have increased frequency of strikes and in many cases they do not appear regularly in the courts that prolonged litigation. Police do not complete investigation reports in time and submit challans with delay. He also blamed judges for not taking pain to ensure speedy disposal of cases entrusted to them. Referring to Prosecution branch he said that prosecution officers mostly serve as post office to transfer cases to courts for trial after receiving them from police. Since people have no confidence in them, they engage their own pleaders to plead cases. Talking about Revenue courts he said that mostly cases are settled with the revenue staff by the party who is financially stronger. Another advocate Afzal Warriach of Shaheedanwali said that court is place where litigants are looted. They after travelling long journeys come to courts where they are fleeced at the hands of lawyers’ clerks and courts staff for obtaining next dates for hearing. If they do not pay some money they have to wait till closing hours of the court for knowing about next dates for hearing of their cases. And when they learn about the lawyers boycott they feel badly disappointed. One Mukhtar Virk, President Kisan Wing. Pakistan Ex-Servicemen Society Mandi Bahauddin said that no one is bothered about ensuring speedy justice to litigants. Their cases are prolonged from generations to generations. The justice system is faulty and very expensive. He said why the litigants are asked to hire services of lawyers? Some procedure should be evolved where grieved persons can directly approach courts and seek justice. He said it was police and revenue department officials that serve as agents to involve people in litigation. Patwaris make false entries in revenue record and in order to get such entries corrected people have to knock the door of justice. Police also make false cases at the instance of influential or for ulterior motives and if the case is true they would turn it false after making certain settlement with the accused party. Police always claim in their press conferences that they have recovered stolen property and vehicles worth millions of rupees but they never disclose how much such property and vehicles were handed over to its owners. Recently a case of stealing a vehicle was registered at civil line police station. An accused was arrested but at the instance of influential was let off with out recovering the stolen vehicle. Owner of the vehicle approached DSP and DPO who did not accept his version as correct and ordered concerned SHO to discharge the case. According to police it was not theft rather it was result of some transaction between the complainant and the accused party. Arfan a foreign returned citizen said that he purchased Pajero that was removed from his house by thieves. Documents of the vehicle are in his possession. He had not transacted any business with the accused. But police under the influence of political leaders or to serve their ulterior motives have discharged his case which according to him was a great injustice.