Justice Qazi Faez Isa has taken oath as the new chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) at a ceremony at the Presidency in Islamabad.
The senior-most judge of the Supreme Court was administered the oath by President Arif Alvi, as caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar also joined them on stage.
Justice Isa's wife, Sarina, stood besides him as he took the oath as the new CJP.
High-ranking government and military officials, including army chief Gen Syed Asim Munir, federal ministers, senators, foreign ambassadors, former chief justices of the country and other dignitaries witnessed the oath-taking ceremony.
This transition follows the departure of the outgoing chief justice, Umar Ata Bandial, who recently vacated his official residence in the Judges Colony in Islamabad. Bandial had served in the highest judicial office for a tenure of over 19 months, having been appointed on February 2, 2022.
Justice Qazi Faez Isa's term as chief justice of Pakistan will last for over a year, concluding on October 25, 2024.
His journey to this esteemed position began when he was initially sworn in as a Supreme Court judge on September 5, 2014.
Justice Isa is the senior-most judge of the top court after outgoing CJP Umar Ata Bandial.
Notably, Justice Isa will be the second CJP from Balochistan, after Iftikhar Chaudhary.
He has earned widespread recognition for his pivotal role in presiding over significant cases during his tenure. Some of his notable judgments include his involvement with the Memogate Commission, the Quetta Tragedy Inquiry Commission, and the Faizabad Dharna Decision.
With a tenure as Chief Justice of Pakistan spanning 13 months, Justice Isa is set to retire from this position on October 25, 2024.
Justice Isa was born on October 26, 1959, in Quetta. His father, Qazi Muhammad Isa, was a leading member of the movement for the establishment of Pakistan and a close associate of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
Justice Isa completed his primary education in Quetta and his A and O levels at Karachi Grammar School. He then went to London to study law, where he completed the bar professional examination.
Justice Isa was registered as an advocate in the Balochistan High Court (BHC) on January 30, 1985, and became an advocate of the SC in March 1998.
He practiced law in the BHC and the SC for over 27 years before being appointed as the chief justice of the BHC in 2009.
The jurist served as chief justice of the high court from 2009 to 2014 and was elevated to the SC in 2014.
Following the declaration of a state of emergency in the country on November 3, 2007, the judge made a principled decision. He chose not to appear before judges who he believed had violated their oath.
During the same period, the apex court nullified the decision made on November 3 and the then-judges of the BHC resigned in protest.
Fast-forward to August 5, 2009, Justice Isa assumed the position of judge and later chief justice of the BHC. Subsequently, on September 5, 2014, he took the oath as an SC jurist.
Recently, Justice Isa has been at the centre of attention due to his protest against the non-implementation of the Supreme Court Practice and Procedure Act, which was created during the Shehbaz Sharif era.
As an act of protest, he has refrained from hearing any cases for the past five months and opted to work in his chambers instead.