NEW YORK - The dressing down in the Supreme Court of top Pakistani officials for the failure to take up of the case of Swat woman who was publicly flogged was highlighted in a leading American newspaper on Tuesday, saying that Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry had lived up to his reputation as a defender of human rights. "The newly restored chief justice of Pakistan displayed his reputation as a human rights advocate and a prod to the government on Monday, when he hauled the attorney general and other officials before the Supreme Court and rebuked them over the flogging of a 17-year-old woman in the Taliban-controlled area of Swat," a dispatch in The New York said. "The chief justice, Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, assailed the officials for laziness and self-importance, and challenged them for not taking up the case until it became a national scandal in recent days, when a video showing the woman pinned to the ground and repeatedly whipped by a Taliban commander was broadcast on Pakistani television", correspondent Jane Perlez wrote from Islamabad. "By choosing to highlight the terror in Swat, Mr. Chaudhry, who has been back on the bench about two weeks after two years of enforced limbo, immediately returned to his role of shaming an acquiescent government and military into acting in the face of wrongdoing". Last week, judge Chaudhry and his seven fellow judges demanded that the officials bring the woman, known as Chand, before the court as part of an investigation into what had happened. "When the officials failed to produce her Monday, the hearing turned into a critical public airing of the governments decision to enter a peace deal in February that effectively gave the Taliban control over Swat...", the dispatch said. "From the volley of exchanges between the judges and the officials, and an impassioned account by a prominent lawyer (Abdul Latif Afridi) before the court of the terror in Swat, it became clear that the Taliban ran the area with impunity". The dispatch noted thagt some commentators and political leaders have defended the flogging as being within the bounds of Islamic law.