LAHORE – MIAN DAWOOD - The Federal Government has decided to remove the law officers who were appointed on the recommendation of former law minister Babar Awan at the High Courts and the Supreme Court. The Deputy Attorney Generals and Standing Councils would be sacked after the approval of President Asif Ali Zardari, a senior official said on Monday.
This development has came in the lime light after the disassociation of Babar Awan from the Zardari camp. Awan, it is said, is nowadays seeking his former boss’s pardon from all party designations as well suspension of his membership of Pakistan Lawyers’ Forum.
Official said that they were working to sort out the names of those law officers who have no relations with Pakistan People’s Party but were ‘rewarded’ against huge remunerations and protocol when Babar Awan was the Federal Minister for Law , Justice and Parliamentary Affairs from Nov 03, 2008 to April 12, 2011.
“Federal law officers, who have strong background of sacrifices for PPP, will not be terminated but Awan’s mud will be cleaned,” he clarified. “The current setup of PPP especially President Zardari’s close aides are terming Babar Awan as a party traitor after his refusal to own the summaries he and former federal law secretary Masood Chishti had sent to the prime minister, recommending that letters should not be sent to Switzerland for reopening the graft cases against president after the apex court’s verdict on National Reconciliation Order,” a senator, requesting anonymity, said.
“The final decision about the termination of Awan’s blue-eyed law officers has been taken during the Zardari’s visit to Punjab wherein he has also directed to search most competent lawyers for the posts of DAGs and Standing Counsels,” a close aide of the president confirmed the development. He said that President Zardari had received applications from the lawyers who belong to the Punjab Governor’s camp while some of them belong to PLF Punjab chapter for the post of deputy attorney general and standing counsels.
“In first step, the federal law officers will be removed from high courts especially Lahore High Court, later the practice will be replicated at the apex court,” the officials disclosed, adding that termination of about 200 to 275 law officers was expected.
A senior PPP lawyer, requesting anonymity, told the Nation that Babar Awan had misguided the PPP leadership; therefore, the President had punished him and decided to remove all those law officers appointed during his tenure at the ministry.
“Awan was a real dictator in PPP’s legal team because he not only appointed his favorites and incompetent lawyers as DAG and standing counsels but also strongly ignored those lawyers who had sacrificed for the PPP,” a PPP lawyer, who has submitted his application for the post, said. “Babar Awan had told me that all genuine PPP lawyers had been accommodated. The party had rewarded him beyond merit but now it seems that he deceived everyone,” a senior PLF office bearer quoted President Asif Zardari as saying and added Awan had also asked him that the funds had been distributed only in those bar associations where PPP lawyers were in good numbers.
The office bearers of People’s Lawyers Forum had briefed the President Asif Ali Zardari about their problems and organisational structure during his visit to Punjab.