ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Finance, Revenue, Statistics and Economic Affairs Division Ishaq Dar on Tuesday said the government would pro-actively work on judicial reforms and implementation of National Action Plan during next two years.
“It will be our endeavor that during next two years work is done pro-actively on judicial reforms so after expiry of the period of military courts our civil judicial system is fully equipped to deal with extraordinary situations,” he said speaking in the National Assembly on the 18th Constitutional Amendment Bill.
The minister said that earlier amendment made in that regard expired due to sunset clause included in that constitutional amendment. Therefore, a new amendment was required in wake of recurrence of terrorist attacks and initiation of operation Radd-al-Fisad.
He said 15 meetings of the parliamentary party leaders and the technical committee constituted for the purpose to reach consensus and bring a unanimous amendment.
He said the government had agreed to the proposal of political parties to make the amendment for a period of two years instead of three as was proposed by the government.
Dar said all the parties had also agreed to make the previous amendment as basic draft for the new one with certain specific changes as he mentioned to four amendments by the parties in the original draft.
In this regard, he mentioned to the amendment relating to presenting the arrested before the court within 24 hours, charge sheet him, provide him an opportunity to hire a lawyer of his choice and in case otherwise the government would arrange a lawyer for the arrested and finally Qanoon-e-Shahdat would also apply to the constitutional amendment.
He said the matters like strengthening judicial system and forming a committee for judicial reforms were also discussed so that civil courts were able to deal with terrorism cases in future.
He contested the argument of some members that they were supporting the amendment under compulsions and said nations across the world made extraordinary decisions in extra ordinary situations. “The need for military courts was felt at All Parties Conference convened after the APS terrorist attack. Now, again the country is undergoing another operation wherein scores of terrorists are being arrested, who had to be trialed.”
He said,”It is welcoming that all political parties supported the amendment as it has now become our ideology to cleanse our country of menace of terrorism.”
He proposed to the House to constitute committee for judicial reforms .- APP