This blog has noted before that even the esteemed Chief Justice cannot pass a purity test. Obviously, this does not mean that he is not a man deserving of respect. But it does make pretty clear that certain people are being held to different standards than others. Take, for example, reports that the CoD is now being altered in order to protect the interests of the Chief Justice as well. For all the talk about treating all people the same under the laws, there still remains one man who appears to be above the law. How can this be?
Following the recent confusion over judicial appointments, there was the recommendation that the process of appointment of judges through a judicial commission that is laid out in the CoD be implemented. Only, there was one problem with this for some people: The CoD says very clearly that the judicial commission should be headed by a chief justice who had never taken oath under a PCO (Provisional Constitution Order). Sounds good, right? But wait, Chief Justice Iftikhar has taken oath under a PCO. If the CoD was implemented as written and agreed to, it would disqualify the CJ!
What is the solution, then? For the CJ to step aside and allow some truly independent person to head the commission? Of course not. This is Pakistan. Instead, opposition parties demanded to change the rules.
PML-N leader Iqbal Zafar Jhagra even said that he was chaning the CoD only to benefit CJ Iftikhar. He even said that they might not even stop there, but would enact other changes to the CoD to benefit their ends.
“It would have been unfair to send Justice Iftikhar home just for the sake of implementation of the CoD,” he said.
Hinting at more changes in the charter, Mr Jhagra said parliament was supreme and it could change the CoD.
It seems there are two sets of rules here. For some people, you are guilty even if no court in the world has ever convicted you. For other people, the rules will be changed to make sure that nothing stands in the way of your power.
Enough is enough. It is time to stop changing the rules for the benefit of one person. Implement the CoD as it was written and agreed to and do not make any changes to benefit any single person. CJ Iftikhar is not the only man in the country who can head the judicial commission, and we should not be changing the rules only to benefit him.