With wife standing by his side, Isa takes oath as CJP

President Arif Alvi (c) while administering the oath to the new CJP Justice Qazi Faez Isa (right, standing with his wife) with PM Kakar looking toward the audience on September 17, 2023. — APP

ISLAMABAD: Justice Qazi Faez Isa was sworn in as the 29th Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) here on Sunday.

Respecting the wish of Justice Faez Isa, President Dr Arif Alvi administered the oath in Urdu and English to the new CJP for the first time in the judicial history of the country.

Justice Faez Isa also called his spouse, Mrs. Sarina Isa, to the stage before start of the swearing-in, and she remained standing by him till completion of the oath administration.

However, Justice Isa’s tenure as the country’s chief justice will be quite brief, as he is set to retire on October 25, 2024.

Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, Chief of Army Staff General Asim Munir, judges of Supreme Court of Pakistan, federal ministers, four provincial governors, judges of Islamabad High Court, Federal Shariat Court, office-bearers of bars, law officers, members of bars and former judges were also present.

Soon after swearing-in of Qazi Faez Isa as the new CJP, the Supreme Court of Pakistan announced that the hearing of the petitions challenging the Supreme Court (Practice and Procedure) Act will be held on Monday (today) by a full court. The full court will be headed by CJP Qazi Faez Isa.

As per the cause list issued by the SC’s registrar office, a 15-member full court bench will hear the case on Monday at 9:30am.

Sources said the full court proceedings would be broadcast live, and the information ministry was taking necessary steps for the purpose.

An eight-member larger bench, headed by former chief justice Umar Ata Bandial, had previously heard the petitions challenging the constitutionality of the law aimed at curtailing the suo moto powers of the apex court’s top judge, and adjourned the hearing for Sept 18.

Meanwhile, important changes took place in the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) and Judicial Commission on Sunday after the oath-taking of Justice Qazi Faez Isa as the new CJP. Justice Ijazul Ahsan became part of the SJC, while Justice Sardar Tariq is already a part of the council.

As per the Constitution, the CJP and the two most senior judges are part of the SJC.

On the other hand, Justice Muneeb Akhtar joined the Judicial Commission, mandated with the appointment of judges. Justice Sardar Tariq, Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Mansoor Ali Shah are already part of the commission.

According to the Constitution, the CJP and four senior-most judges are part of the commission, which is responsible for appointing judges to the superior judiciary. Other members of the commission include a retired judge, the law minister and attorney general for Pakistan. A member of the Pakistan Bar Council is also a part of the Judicial Commission.

Meanwhile, the newly-appointed CJP Justice Qazi Faez Isa Sunday appointed Jazeela Aslam as the Supreme Court’s first-ever woman Registrar.

Pursuant to the apex court’s notification, the Lahore High Court (LHC) also handed over the services of Ms Aslam, a district and sessions judge from Okara, to the apex court.

Ms Aslam will serve as the top court’s registrar for a period of three years on deputation.

Separately, Dr Mushtaq Ahmed — serving as a professor and chairman of the Department of Shariah and Law at Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University — has been appointed as CJP Isa’s secretary, whereas Balochistan’s Abdul Sadiq — serving as a security officer in the Balochistan High Court (BHC) — will serve as the new CJP’s staff officer.

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