LAHORE - A petition on Tuesday was moved to the Lahore High Court seeking directives for Secretary law and Advocate General of Punjab to formulate a mechanism for appointment of law officers and to bar the law officers from taking part in political rallies.

Advocate Ch Shoaib Saleem moved the petition submitting that on October 13,  former additional advocate general Khawar Ikram Bhatti slapped a police officer outside a NAB court though that he was holding a constitutional post.

He said it was the day when Maryam Nawaz and her spouse Safdar had to appear before the NAB court. Being public office holder, he was obligated to have been in his office or in court performing his duties as he was drawing a hefty salary from the national exchequer but he was there in the crowd, the lawyer said.

He alleged that the law officers participate in political rallies. The conduct, act and omission of Khawar Ikram Bhatti was an example of it, though, an FIR No 286/17 was also lodged against him under sections of 353, 186 and 34 of the Pakistan Penal Code with police station Ramna, Islamabad on the same day, and subsequently he was also removed from the office.

Mr. Saleem further said appointment mechanism of the law officers is not regulated by any rules or law and is totally dependent on the pleasure of the executive head of the government which itself nibbles away the fair exercise of discretionary appointments and undermines the competency of the office. 

He alleged that mostly, the law officers are appointed with AGP from the political wings of various political parties and no open announcements are made before their appointments. He stated the law officers having political support and background are selected for various posts in the office of AGP and they remain involved in political activities for their vested interests instead of advancing the interests of the supremacy of law and the constitution.

PhD candidates’ reply sought

The Lahore High Court on Wednesday sought reply from four PhD candidates claiming delay in commencement of PhD classes at Institute of Communication Studies of University of Punjab. Issuing notice on a petition moved by PhD student Khurram Shahzad, Justice Ayesha A Malik expressed displeasure over concealing facts. The court adjourned proceedings until November 14.

Four students approach the court of law, saying: “Due to negligence of PU officials, their classes had not begun as per schedule and chalan forms were not being issued to them.”  They alleged last year, PhD admissions to ICS were cancelled without any reason while this year there feared another year might be wasted.

Khurram challenged petitioners, saying that LHC had already issued directives to the varsity but the the students deliberately concealed this fact. He said that last year, PhD admissions to ICS were cancelled due to malpractices and irregularities in the admission process as failed candidates were declared pass.

On September 8, Justice Shahid Jamil Khan ordered probe into alleged irregularities, the petitioner told the court, adding that the judge also directed to the Faculty of Behavioral and Social Sciences dean to look inot the matter.

He said the four petitioners misled the court by giving impressions that they were the successful candidates and there was a matter of commencement of classes.  He said the petitioners had not been declared successful in the admission process as final merit list was yet to be displayed by the administration.