I have no interest in becoming leader: CJP

KARACHI : Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar Saturday observed he does not care about criticism over his recent visit to Lahore’s Mayo Hospital, as it is his duty to ensure protection of citizens’ fundamental rights.

He was heading a five-judge bench, hearing a petition for provision of clean drinking water and environment to Sindh people.

“I cannot say what I saw at the Mayo Hospital,” the CJP said about the miserable conditions at the public hospital.

“I have no interest in becoming a leader, but I will continue to protect the fundamental rights,” he said, referring to Articles 199 and 184 of the Constitution which allow the courts to step in for the protection of fundamental rights.

“No driver or labourer has ever brought any harm to the country. It is those who have been in power that are responsible for its afflictions.”

He recalled that Sindh chief minister had complained that his hands have been tied by the court, but added that the court “is ready to give him all freedom if he shows any progress.”

The also court vacated its earlier issued stay against transfer and posting of secretaries, and directed chief secretary to pick officers of his choice and submit a timeframe for resolving the water and sanitation issues. The bench however maintained stay on chief secretary’s own transfer.

The CJP vowed to get resolved the issue of water contamination in Sindh and Punjab before the next elections.

“To provide the citizens with clean water is the duty of the state,” the CJP said.

Justice Saqib said the judiciary has also taken up this issue in Punjab and will solve the matter no matter what happens.

“Poisonous water is released into the river which is then supplied to the masses,” he said.

CJP said the water commission has already submitted a report to Sindh government but no action has been taken. He asked Sindh CM Murad Ali Shah to appear before the court and give a timeframe for solving this issue.

Justice Nisar said the CM?and his cabinet are responsible for provision of clean water. He asked the attorney general to tell the court what has been done in this regard since Dec 5, and warned that court could start contempt proceedings if authorities failed to answer it.

The CJP also ordered chief secretary to ensure an end to the “tanker mafia” in two months.

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