LAHORE - Lahore High Court Chief Justice Muhammad Yawar Ali Wednesday transferred registrar Syed Khurshid Anwar Rizvi and made him an officer on special duty (OSD). Justice Ali passed the order after taking oath as the CJ of Lahore High Court.

The Chief Justice also transferred Muzaffargarh District & Sessions Judge Bahadar Ali Khan and made him LHC’s new registrar.

According to the notification No 24, the new CJ also transferred Directorate of District Judiciary Director General Muhammad Akmal Khan to a newly-created post at Lahore’s sessions court, and made him an OSD.  He also ordered transfer of D &SJ/Special Judge, Custom, Taxation and Anti-Smuggling Tahir Sabir against an upgraded post with HR-District Judiciary.

A petition moved by Abdullah Malik, a member of civil society, questioning notification for premature retirement of Syed Khurshid Anwar Rizvi as registrar which was allowed by former LHC CJ Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, and challenging appointment procedure of the registrar has been pending before the Lahore High Court.

Last week, Justice Muhammad Farrukh Irfan Khan suspended the notification about the registrar’s premature retirement, and referred the case to the chief justice for constitution of a larger bench on it.

According to the rules, stated by the petitioner’s counsel Azhar Siddique, a judicial officer could be appointed registrar through the public service commission. Any officer from the establishment of the high court could be appointed registrar, he said.

During the proceedings, Advocate General Punjab (AGP) Shakilur Rehman Khan asked the bench to hold in-camera proceedings on the case due to sensitivity of the case and reputation of the institution concerned. However, the judge rejected the plea and observed that restriction could not be put on information after promulgation of Article 10-A of the Constitution. “Judiciary is not a sacred cow,” the judge observed, adding, “courts are run with public money”.

The AGP opposed the petition, questioning its maintainability. The law officer said it was an administrative matter and related to powers of the chief justice. He said that such a matter could not be fixed on the judicial side.

Notices issued in anti-judiciary speeches case

The Lahore High Court on Wednesday issued notices to Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Safdar and others on contempt petition seeking contempt proceedings against them over alleged anti-judiciary speeches.

Justice Shahid Karim took up the application with directives to the registrar office to fix the application with main petition and adjourned the hearing until Feb 14.

Amna Malik, a member of civil society network, had moved the application, alleging that the respondents were continuously attacking on the judges of Supreme Court and Nawaz Sharif as well as other leadership of PML-N was also trying to discredit the apex judiciary.

Pemra had also been remaining very dormant in case of Nawaz Sharif and his kitchen cabinet, he said.

The petitioner asked the court that the licences of channels that broadcast hate material, hate speeches, derogatory remarks against state institutions like judiciary may kindly be suspended in the best interest of the country.

 She also asked the court that a direction be issued to Pemra for issuance of notifications to all the news channels that hate speeches and derogatory remarks against the institutions of the country may not be on aired or broadcast, in the larger interest of the nation and sovereignty

of the country.