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SC FIXES CASE REGARDING THE CODE OF CONDUCT OF LAWYERS ON 17.03.2014

Dated: 15-March-2014

The case Crl. Misc. Application No. 86 of 2014 (Report of Secretary, Punjab Bar Council, Lahore) in Criminal Petition No. 240 of 2012 (Salamat Ali Chamma VS The State and another) has been fixed for hearing on 17.03.2014. A three member bench headed by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja and comprising other two Hon’ble Judges, Mr. Justice Iqbal Hameedur Rahman and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Mushir Alam will hear the case.
 
The brief history of case is that an advocate Mr. Haider Zaman appeared before the trail court at District Sheikhupura on 21.07.2012 in connection with case and misbehaved with the Hon’ble Judge of the Trail Court. The case came up for hearing before a three member Bench of Supreme Court headed by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja and comprising on two other Hon’ble Judges, Hon’ble Mr. Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Muhammad Ather Saeed on 31.08.2012. The Bench dismissed the petition with order that the copy of the order shall be sent to the Punjab Bar Council for disciplinary proceedings against Malik Haider Zaman. A copy of the order shall also be sent to Hon’ble the Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court. The Bench also expressed appreciation for the dignified and firm approach taken by the learned trail Court in the face of provocation and trying circumstances.
 
Moreover, again the case came up for hearing on 26.02.2014 before a two member Bench headed by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja and comprising on Hon’ble Mr. Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan. The Bench passed the following order:-
Order

Jawwad S. Khawaja, J. Mr. Khalid Umar, Advocate has appeared with the record. He shall prepare a copy of the record and file the same in Court before the next date of hearing.

2. The necessity for fixing this matter in Court, is evident from the circumstances set out in our order dated 31.8.2012 and the events which have followed the said order. We had noted in our order that “a competent, diligent and ethical Bar is an indispensable component of our judicial system. This system cannot function properly if Members of the Bar do not adhere to the code of conduct prescribed under the Legal Practitioners and Bar Councils Act, 1973”. The provisions of Article 37(d) of the Constitution are also of the utmost relevance. This Article stipulates that “the State shall … ensure inexpensive and expeditious justice”. From the decorous and dignified manner in which the learned trial Court dealt with the matter, it is apparent that there were hindrances placed before the learned trial Court which resulted in denial of the above noted constitutional imperative.

3. The Bar exists for the purpose of ensuring access to and delivery of justice. The Bar is also meant to stand up for upholding the rule of law. But the Bar can discharge these functions only if its members abide by their code of conduct and are subjected, like everyone else, to the rule of law.

4. The disciplinary mechanism of the Legal Practitioners and Bar Councils Act, 1976 and the proceedings taken by the Punjab Bar Council in this case appear, prima facie, to have fallen short of the standards set out for Advocates in the code of conduct prescribed under the aforesaid Act.

5. It is inter alia, for the above reasons that we would like to examine the law and, in the light thereof the decision of the Punjab Bar Council Tribunal dated 24.10.2013.

6. Notice issued to Malik Haider Zaman, Advocate has been returned unserved. Let fresh notice issue to Malik Haider Zaman, Advocate for 17th March, 2014.

 
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