..? by Nasir Mehmood
Government collect taxes from citizens in return for service delivery like, provision of justice, security of life and property, defense from internal and external aggression and other general utility services. Among public services, provision of justice is primary responsibility of state and fundamental right of citizen.
In order to provide justice, government introduces judicial system (lower and higher Judiciary) based on the core principles of impartiality, independent and being fearless, which can ensure easy and accessible justice to the people without any political, ethnic and religious discrimination. If justice system does not fulfill the said core principles then citizen will dissatisfy from the system for which they are contributing their hard earned income as tax to the national exchequer.
After being disappointed from the system resourceful people will migrate from the society in which they feel insecure towards the areas and countries in which they feel themselves secure, if judiciary does not deliver justice in letter and spirit. This is the main reason of brain drain of human capital from developing countries to developed countries which negatively impacted socioeconomic development in these countries including Pakistan.
How to improve justice system and how to make it accessible is big question for the state and society. To bring reform in judiciary, there is need of finance and our country does not have sufficient resources to introduce long term reform in judiciary due to scarcity of funds. However if technical steps are taken in good faith and systematic reforms are introduced in judiciary it will resolve numerous problems of citizen without spending huge funds.
In developed and civilized societies judiciary is totally separate organ of the state and its primary responsibility is provision of justice to the people. Responsibility of executive is to implement court order and to provide balanced environment to the tax payers and business community in the larger national interest. Besides other reforms separation of judiciary from executive is long standing demand of litigants? community in Pakistan.
Our executive is already burdened with different nature of responsibilities and they don?t have time to involve in judicial matter. Due to involvement of executive in pity criminal and land ownership cases their attention is diverted from administrative matter at district level which negatively impact service delivery to the citizen.
Secondly, people in executive positions don?t have sufficient experience, professional skill and legal background like Judges of Judiciary, as a result quality justice is not provided to the people from the courts of executives. Judicial officer/civil judges and district judges are highly professional people having profound grip over law and their job nature is basically designed in such a way that they remain impartial and independent in dispensation of justice. While District Administrative Officers live in the society and frequently remain in contact with general public for resolving administrative matters due to their nature of official duty, therefore dispensing impartial justice is very difficult and big challenge for them.
In this grim situation if criminal and land ownership cases remain under jurisdiction of executive/district administration it results disaster for litigants? community and they are suffering this scourge for the last many years. While responsibility of executive should be looking after administration of the district and ensure direct service delivery to the citizen to promote good governance and progressive environment in the society. Hence preoccupation of executive in legal cases impedes their core responsibilities which opportunity cost to society is very high.
To resolve this issue Chief Justice Pakistan, Honorable Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, Chief Justice of Peshawar High Court Honorable Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth, Prime Minister of Pakistan, Chief Minister KP, Federal Law Minister, Provincial Law Minister, Opposition Leader at National Assembly, Opposition leader at Provincial Assembly Office bearers of legal fraternity are humbly requested to introduce reform in judicial system which can separate executive from Judiciary.
The entire criminal as well as land ownership cases may kindly be handed over to Lower (Civil and District session Judges) and Higher Judiciary to ensure impartial and independent justice in the society, and excessive burden of cases may be released from the shoulder of executive. If this reform is introduced it will provide sufficient time to executive to focus on administrative issues at district level while judiciary will provide independent and impartial justice in the society, as a result maximum relief can be provided to the citizen.? .. Nasir Mehmood, Chitral 13 Sep 2019.