LAHORE - One of the founding members of the PPP and in-charge  study circle, Altaf Qureshi has rejected the idea of setting up special trial courts terming them unconstitutional and counter-productive.  

“There is no provision in the Constitution for establishment of military courts as they are against the fundamental rights of citizens”, he told The Nation while commenting on the development.  

He was of the view that under the military courts there would be a greater likelihood of innocent persons being implicated in false cases who would not have enough time to defend themselves against the charges.  

“It would tarnish country’s image at the world level as the civilized nations don’t resort to such extreme measures”, he remarked.

Qureshi further stated that a parallel system of dispensing justice was an infringement on the jurisdiction of the judiciary. He demanded of the Chief Justice of Pakistan to take a suo moto notice to forestall the move which, according to him, was against the principle of independence of judiciary.  

 “This only shows civilian government’s failure to dispense speedy justice to all”, Altaf remarked, adding that government should improve its judicial system instead of passing on this responsibility to the military which is not trained for this job.

The PPP leader suggested that flaws in the system of investigation and prosecution need to be removed through training of the police and other staff involved in the trial. Similarly, he added, the government should provide security to judges and the lawyers so that they could perform their duties without any fear.

“It reminds one of the Zia-ul-Haq era when political opponents were persecuted through military courts”, he averred. Mr Qureshi said previous PPP government was also pressurized to take such a step but the leadership sustained the pressure unlike the present one which has surrendered before the military authorities.