Supreme Court adjourns hearing till March 2
The Supreme Court has restrained the Capital Development Authority from demolishing the illegal chambers of lawyers in Islamabad’s F-8 till March 2.
The top court was hearing the petition filed by the Islamabad Bar Council against the demolition of the chambers.
During the hearing, many lawyers gathered at the rostrum and the top judge directed them to leave the court. “The court won’t be pressured by anyone,” Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed remarked.
If a lawyer wants to practice then he/she will have to make their own offices, said the judge. Lawyers aren’t supposed to encroach on public land. The bar association does not have the right to lease out chambers to lawyers, he added.
The court has issued notices to the attorney-general and advocate-general.
Many lawyers clicked selfies outside the court after getting temporary relief in the case.
The case became controversial after lawyers attacked and vandalised the Islamabad High Court after their chambers were demolished by the CDA two weeks ago.
On February 16, the Islamabad High Court ruled that the illegal chambers of lawyers built on a playground in Sector F-8 should be demolished.
A 30-page judgement of a larger bench, authored by Chief Justice Athar Minallah, said that their chambers are ‘illegal, void and without jurisdiction and authority”. The court noted that records show that office-bearers of the Islamabad District Bar had “allotted plots in favour of some lawyers for construction of private chambers” in 2017. The bar did not obtain any “permission or authorisation from the authorities”.
The bar members have been instructed to clear the “illegal construction” and “restore the playground for public use”.
The ground is situated “next to a commercial area where the administration of the Islamabad Capital Territory had rented privately-owned buildings more than four decades ago for establishing the District Courts,” the court said. “The playground was encroached, and some construction has also been raised by a few enrolled advocates for building their private chambers.”
The judge said that any advocate “who takes the law into his or her own hands or violates the law in any manner whatsoever is not eligible to be certified by the High Court as ‘fit and proper’ to plead and appear before the Supreme Court”.