Chief Justice Lahore High Court Umar Ata Bandial has expressed concern at President Zardari disobeying the court orders of July 2011 on holding dual offices. The court categorically stated that it adds up to shaking the foundations of the constitution. This time around it was specific in stating that although the President enjoyed immunity he has to respect the court’s orders.

On the other side of the spectrum, it is quite sad that some of the PPP ministers have been repeatedly playing the role of devil’s advocate openly arguing in public that the possibility of the president acting apolitically was whimsical given the fact that the office of the president was always a political one. This is a serious violation of the constitution that bars the head of the state from indulging in politics of any kind whose role is to serve as the chain that binds and links the federation in a non-partisan way. The court’s observation that the foundations of the constitutions have been shaken is not misplaced. It is the attitude of open defiance that sets in a culture of disregarding rule of law. Others too start to think that they also have a right to assume that law is meant for statute books only. Mr Zardari must himself set an example, follow the court’ orders in line with the constitution to curb this tendency.