ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court Monday summoned federal and provincial law secretaries tomorrow (January 21) to give timeframe for uploading all constitutional amendments, acts, ordinances, rules, regulations, bylaws and other statutory instruments on websites with translation in national and local languages.
A three-member bench, headed by Justice Jawwad S Khawaja heard the suo motu regarding the errors in legal books and journals etc. The errors are found in different books on Contract Act 1872, Manual of Intellectual Property Laws , Printing Ordinance 2000, Punjab Consumer Protection Laws , etc.
The bench observed that printing mistakes in the books, manuals journals are material led to glaring consequences, causing loss to either of parties in the litigation. A senior official told that it will be very tough task for the federal government to place 5,000 laws on its website. During the hearing, a representative of law ministry has admitted that the ministry has failed to place all the laws with national language on its website. Likewise, a law officer of Balochistan told that there is no website of provincial law department.
Justice Khawaja remarked that debate is going on regarding the abolition of terrorism but the federal government has failed to place the anti-terrorism law on the website. Similarly, up till now, the government did not provide the list of ban organizations to the media.
Another member of the bench Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan said it is the duty of executive to make arrangement for publishing or printing legal books so that citizens could aware in this regard, adding people will follow the laws through awareness.
The federal government tabled a bill in the federal cabinet about the amendment in the Law Reports Act 1875, wherein in case of error in the legal books, the publishers/printers will be liable to pay one hundred thousand rupees fine.
Deputy Attorney General Sohail Mahmood has submitted the copy of that bill before the apex court. The DAG told the bench that Law Reports Amendment Act 2015 has already been tabled before the federal cabinet, adding that section 6A Act XVIII of 1875 will be inserted, which says that all federal acts, ordinances and other statuary instruments shall be published or printed in the accordance with the text printed in the relevant Gazette of Pakistan. The bill further says that no court shall take cognizance of an offence punishable under this Act except upon a complaint in writing by a presiding officer of the court or tribunal by which the judgment or order in respect of the offence was committed was given or any office holder of a registered bar association or a bar council and an officer designated by a federal or a provincial governments. It is further stated that no court other than a court of session shall try any offence under this act.