RAWALPINDI - Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has said that Pakistan cannot make headway without bridging gap between rich and the poor.

“There should be one law for every one irrespective of caste, creed and wealth,” he said addressing the participants of a farewell dinner, hosted by Lahore High Court Bar Association (LHCBA) in his honor here on Saturday.

The dinner was also attended by the judges of Supreme Court, Islamabad High Court, Lahore High Court and lower courts, besides senior and junior lawyers.

The CJP said that after his retirement on December 11, 2013 the Supreme Court of Pakistan and lower courts would perform much better for the rule of law and supremacy of Constitution in the country. He expressed confidence in Chief Justice designate Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani and said people had a lot of expectations from the courts, which would be led by Justice Jillani after his retirement.

He said the apex courts were free now and new CJP was appointed without influence of the executive.  

He made it clear that the verdicts of judiciary were not taken while keeping in view special personalities, vowing that the judiciary would continue to make judgments without any pressure at every cost.

Justice Iftikhar said his office barred him from unveiling some truths but he would speak freely after his retirement. He said a strong relation between judiciary and the bar was mandatory for rule of the law. He said there was no reality in the rumors of his extension by the incumbent government. Justice Chaudhry said as per Constitution every judge had to get retired at the age of 65 and he should celebrate the retirement as Youm-e-Tashakur,” he added.

“I have proved one thing during my presence in office that judiciary is free,” CJP mentioned. He thanked the lawyers and civil society for their struggle for restoring judiciary.

Earlier, the chief justice designate Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani said the judges had no political agenda and CJP Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry remained loyal with his oath. He said outgoing CJP did his level best for rule of law in the country. “CJP defended the Constitution by laying down verdicts purely on merit basis,” he said.

He said the lawyer’s movement made people aware of implementation of the Constitution. Justice Tassaduq Jillani paid a rich tribute to CJP Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.