Who’s afraid of Justice Ramday?

A starter kit to block Justice (r) Khalilur Rehman Ramday’s appointment as an ad hoc judge of the Supreme Court is under assembly. It’s clear as the blue sky that the Zardari government is loath to see the fiercely independent judge back on the Supreme Court bench. It has therefore declared that Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry’s letter sent to President Zardari nominating Justice Ramday has not reached its destination! More on that in a minute.

Meanwhile respected jurists like S M Zafar, Justice (r) Tariq Mahmood (my hero for the CJ’s restoration movement) and the most venerable of all, Justice (r) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim are going on TV channels speaking against the re-appointment of Justice Ramday. On a recent chat show, the three gentlemen unanimously demanded that the chief justice “take back” his request to the president asking for the rehiring of Justice Ramday.

PML-Q Senator S M Zafar is technically right when he says that an ad hoc judge can only be appointed to the Supreme Court when all the vacancies have first been filled up. “Unless his newly vacated seat on the Supreme Court bench gets filled up by a judge of the High Court, it’s premature to ask the president to appoint Justice Ramday.”

Fair enough.

But what S M Zafar didn’t tell the viewers was that only two months ago, when Justice Ghulam Rabbani retired from the Supreme Court, the vacancy was filled up by a judge of the Sindh High Court along with the appointment of Justice Rabbani as an ad hoc judge. It was done simultaneously. President Zardari gave his blessings to both the gentlemen who by the way took the oath one after another. The first to take the oath was the newly appointed judge followed by Justice Rabbani as an ad hoc judge.

“Justice Ramday’s extension is against all principles,” announced Justice (r) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim. This was his signature tune throughout the talk show. Did Justice Ebrahim and S M Zafar voice similar discontent when Justice Rabbani got an extension only last October? If so, then I salute the two for being men of ‘principles’.

Justice (r) Tariq Mahmood, I adored, because he lambasted dictator Musharraf during the restoration of the CJ and other judges like Justice Ramday. He stood behind them like a rock, a voice of reason and courage, never abandoning their cause. Today, he’s gone sour. Why? Criticising the CJ’s move to rehire Justice Ramday, Tariq Mahmood cited the Al-Jihad Trust case, insisting that a retired judge of the Supreme Court is not eligible for reappointment. But surely he must know that apart from Justice Rabbani’s extension, Justice Hamid Ali Mirza retired and was made an ad hoc judge in 2005. The tradition goes back to 1976, when Justice Waheedudin (father of Justice Wajhiuddin) was appointed an ad hoc judge after he retired from the Supreme Court.

I hope this clears up some things.

The anchor too, in unholy haste, passed judgment on Justice Ramday’s extension. “The chief justice’s letter to the president asking for Justice Ramday’s reappointment does not carry weight and therefore should be withdrawn.”

Why is the return of Justice Ramday causing such anguish among the punditocracy?

Our Constitution stipulates that the number of judges in the Supreme Court along with the chief justice must be fixed by parliament. Should the number be increased, then it can only be done by a ‘President Order.’ In 2007, an Act of Parliament fixed the number of judges at 16 plus the chief justice. But Article 182 of the Constitution states that if “temporary” judges are needed, then the chief justice is authorised to appoint anyone whenever he feels that he needs more judges in the Supreme Court. He can do it in two ways: either elevate a sitting judge of the High Court or appoint a retired judge of the Supreme Court within three years of his retirement. While the president appoints a judge of the Supreme Court in “consultation” with the chief justice, the protocol is reversed in the appointment of an ad hoc judge. The chief justice appoints the ad hoc judge with the “approval” of the president!

Make no mistake: the chief justice wants Justice Ramday as an ad hoc judge to the Supreme Court.

Traditionally, the president never turns down the chief justice’s request. Doing so would mean an outright confrontation. But were that to happen, the president would be required to put in writing his reasons for not agreeing to the appointment. In Justice Ramday’s case, President Zardari would have a hard time finding holes in his character. The witty, tough-minded judge has assumed an iconic stature. An editor in Lahore brought out a whole supplement when Justice Ramday retired.

What our distinguished legal experts and equally initiated anchors should be asking instead is: what is the fate of the chief justice’s letter to President Zardari recommending Justice Ramday’s appointment?

I gave a letter to the postman/he put it his sack/bright and early next morning/he brought my letter back… Return to sender, address unknown/No such number, no such zone/return to sender/ return to sender/return to sender

The above song is a 1962 rock and roll hit single by the American heartthrob, Elvis Presley. Surely our president and prime minister must have heard and swung to it in their disco years; surely our learned law minister ‘Dr’ Babar Awan must have heard it on his transistor many a time; surely our lordships, Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, and Supreme Court’s Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday must have come across the lyric. And of course the earnest Farhatullah Babar, now the presidential spokesman, must know of Elvis and his pop songs.

We are all of the same vintage, no matter what our station in life today. But the honourable mention of the above gentlemen is linked to a letter which has gone missing. And I fear the case of the missing letter will fall through the cracks once the Supreme Court issues its detailed judgment against the NRO!

The letter encased in a file, stamped and sealed from the office of the highest adjudicator in the land left the Supreme Court premises over two weeks ago. The distance it had to cover was a few furlongs. Even if it was not sent through a ‘special messenger’ or couriered via a commercial organisation or sent ‘by hand,’ but instead was put in the mailbox to be delivered through snail mail, where in the world does it take more than 14 days to reach the most important address in the country – the presidency? The law minister has a lot to explain why his department failed to deliver the letter from no less a person than the chief justice of Pakistan.

Are we the Flintstones living in the Stone Age?

Let a thousand Khalilur Rehman Ramdays bloom. Pakistan needs judges like him to be models of honesty, truth and upholders of law. Since Musharraf’s reference against the chief justice got thrown out in July 2007, the full bench of the Supreme Court has been seized with handling political cases, the latest being the NRO. Hearing of routine cases has been thrown by the wayside. Two million cases had piled up at all levels of judicial hierarchy when the independent judiciary was restored last March.

Let’s get serious.

By: Anjum Niaz



The above-captioned article was written by John Pilger in the daily The Yumiuri Shimbun, of Japan, dated 30th August, 1998. He says “In recent years Muslims have been the greatest sufferers from state terrorism.” The excerpts of his above-mentioned article are as below.

“By knowingly killing innocent people, for political ends, President Clinton is a terrorist. By supporting his actions, the Prime Minister and the Defense Secretary, of Britain, are accomplices. The dictionary meaning of terrorism allows no other interpretation; the rest is willful obfuscation, or propaganda. What matters now is our informed reaction.

In 1986, there was an ‘evil’ Colonel Gaddafi, whose country President Reagan bombed from bases in Britain, killing mostly women and children, including Gaddafi’s 16- month-old daughter.

In 1990, there was the ‘evil’ General Noriega, said to be a dangerous drug trafficker, whose capture by US Marines required a full-scale invasion of his country and the death by bombing of at least 2,000 Panamanians, mostly the poorest of the poor in their barrios. Noriega and drugs had precious little to do with it. The aim was to put Panama, its canal and its US base under direct American sovereignty, managed by other Noriegas.

I the same year, there was ‘the truly evil’ Saddam Hussein, another one of Bush’s and Reagan’s old pals, whose regime they had armed and backed (along with Margaret Thatcher, who sent most of her cabinet to Baghdad as supplicants of arms salesmen). Saddam’s use of American and British weapons in his attack on the “evil” Mullas in Iran in 1980 was perfectly acceptable. A million people died in that ‘forgotten’ war; and the Americans and British arms industries never looked back. Then Saddam Hussein attacked the wrong country, Kuwait, which was effectively an Anglo-American oil protectorate. “An uppity bastard” as one (US) State Department briefer described him more in sorrow than anger. Punishing Saddam Hussein cost as many as 200,000 Iraqi lives, according to a study by the Medical Educational Trust. These were ordinary Iraqis who died during and immediately after a period of military and economic carnage whose true scale has never been appreciated outside the Middle East.

The old fashioned colonial massacre was called the Gulf War. The dead included thousands of Kurdish and Shia people who were Saddam’s bitter opponents and whom Bush had called upon to rise up against their oppressor. Long after it was over New York Newsday revealed, from official sources, that three brigades of the US 1st Mechanized Infantry Division – “The Big Red One” had used snow ploughs mounted on tanks to bury alive Iraqis conscripts in more than seventy miles of trenches. A brigade commander said, “For all I know we have killed thousands”. This is a war crime.

The following year, Bush attacked Somalia in what was called a “humanitarian intervention”. He was in the midst of his re-election campaign. Bush said the marines were doing “God’s work saving thousands of innocents”. Like this moralizing over the Gulf war, this was generally accepted by the British media, with honorable exceptions.

American television crews were waiting as the Marines landed in a beautiful African pre-dawn: “prime time” at home. From the Somalian side there was perpetual darkness; “chaos” and “tribalism” and “warlords”. When the American warlords had completed their adventure in Somalia and taken the media home with them, the story died, as we say. According to CIA estimates, the Marines had left between 7,000 and 10,000 Somalis dead. This was not news.

Soon after he was elected in 1992, Clinton attacked Baghdad with 23 Cruise missiles which destroyed a residential area, killing, once again mostly women and children, including Iraq’s most distinguished artist, Leila al-attar. Interviewed on his way to church with his wife, Clinton said, “I feel quite good about this, and I think the American people feel quite good about it.” The pretext for attack was an Iraqi “plot” to kill George Bush on a visit to Kuwait. There was no hard evidence and the plot story widely regarded as fake.

In 1996, Clinton attacked Iraq again, this time insisting that he was “defending” Kurds against Saddam Hussein, who must pay the price”. Once again thousands of civilians, mostly innocent women and children paid the price.

In earlier 1998, Clinton very nearly attacked Iraq again. Virtually the same footage of missiles looking sleek against the dawn light, courtesy of the Pentagon, appeared on British television. What stopped him..?.

Like spontaneous combustion, public opinion all over the world raised its voice. The cameras have also shown glimpses of Iraq’s silent holocaust, the consequences of the imposition of “economic sanctions” by the United States and Britain (under the usual UN flag of convenience) against the Iraqi civilian population.

Tony Blair said he wept for the children who were killed in Omagh by the terrorist act; but he was silent on the children who died in Iraq as a result of one of the most enduring terrorist acts of the late 20th century, conducted largely by his government and its principal ally, the USA. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization, both UN agencies, more than half a million children have died as a direct result of sanctions. Other sources put the figure at over a million which could be more authentic as compared to of UN organizations which could more likely be biased. Baby food and enriched powdered milk were blockaded along with vital hospital equipments.”

What an irony of fate that Iraqi people whose country was the 2nd biggest oil producing country in the world, had been invaded by US on false pretexts, to rob off their oil and genocide of millions of Muslim Iraqi people, mostly women and children, who were slaughtered by indiscriminate bombing by US Air Force and dozens of cruise missiles by US Naval aircraft carriers. The only fault of theirs was that they belonged, to the 2nd biggest oil producing country in the world. Their one million children died of starvation because of non-availability of baby food, milk powder; ordinary medicines, not to speak of life-saving drugs and hospital equipments. Could there be a bigger terrorism of 20th and 21st centuries committed by USA and its allies, than this, and yet these countries call themselves as the flag carriers of Human Rights..? shame on them.

And when “Oil for Food” programme was launched for Iraqi people by UN, of course with the ‘permission’ from USA, number of people including then UN Secretary General’s son, Indian ex foreign minister and many other notables of the world made millions of dollars in this biggest world-fame scam. The then UN Secretary General announced for a high-level enquiry into it which is s but the enquiry into, the ‘Report’ of which is still awaited or has been hushed-up. UNO is a totally biased against Muslims as well as the most corrupt organization in the world. Muslim countries should better say ‘goodbye’ to UNO and give a stealth spine to OIC to counter terrorism of USA and its allies effectively, as a Muslim Nations Organization.

As John Pilger came out with the facts and has criticized USA and its main ally, Britain, for state terrorism and genocide of Muslims, renowned American scholar, thinker and an intellectual superstar of the 20th century, a philosopher of languages and political campaigner of towering academic reputation, Dr. Noam Chomsky, has also declared “US a terrorist state and the US foreign policy is straight out of mafia”. By the way what does he mean of “mafia”…? He means the American Jews in White house, US administration, CIA, and the Pentagon. Dr. Chomsky also said, “United States did not seek authorization for launching air strikes on Afghanistan from the United Nations because the involvement of the world body could have limited its unilateral power to act.” He did not agree that the American people had supported US attacks on Afghanistan and accused US and Britain of abusing power in ‘war’.

In addition to the above statements, from John Pilger and Dr. Noam Chomsky, a British journalist, George Monblot has said, “US treats the rest of the world as its doormat”, in Guardian News Service. He further said, “Since Bush, Jr. came to office, the United States has torn up more international treaties and disregarded more UN conventions than the rest of the world has done in 20 years. It has scupper-ed the biological weapons convention while experimenting, illegally, on its own. It has permitted CIA hit squads to recommence covert operations of the kind which included, in the past, the assassination of foreign head of state. It has sabotaged the small arms treaty, undermined the international criminal court”.

After taking-over as the President of USA, George W. Bush has also been following the footprints not only of his father but of his predecessors, as well. He also attacked Iraq on illogical pleas as he changed the justification on attack on Iraq twice. At first, Iraq was named as potential target because it was “assisting Al-Qaida”. This turned out to be untrue. Then the US government claimed that Iraq had to be attacked because it could be developing weapons of mass destructions (WMDs), and was refusing to allow weapons inspectors to find out if this was so. Whereas, in fact Saddam Hussein had only a few lame Scud missiles. This allegations also proved to be untrue when Bush himself confessed that he acted on a false and unconfirmed report from CIA, but the damaged had been done as at least half-a-million innocent Iraqis had be massacred, so what…? Iraq had a few lame Scud missiles and nothing else whereas US, Britain, Israel have multiple types of WMDs in abundance but that can’t be questioned. This is terrorism of USA, Britain and Israel. Moreover, according to George Monblot, US have to remain on war with any country so that its war-ammunition factories keep on working, throughout the year. After Iraq it is Afghanistan and Pakistan, then its Iran or Sudan, and Yemen, on USA’s agenda of war.

The Muslim states are always ‘suspected’ of making WMDs, by USA and its allies, whereas the blamers have stored numerous types of WMDs piled up in their respective countries, their ammunition factories running 24 hours preparing WMDs to be used on weaker Muslim civilians/countries with the only objective of genocide, of Muslims, and to have control on their natural resources as they are getting oil for free by printing dollars which is NOT backed by gold which means that it’s just a piece of printed paper.

Similarly, under the guise of “War-on-terror”, Bush Jr. invaded Afghanistan, in the name of “Crusade”, killing at least about a million innocent Afghan civilians in the process while unleashing the rain of cruise missiles, Daisy Cutter bombs, the Cave-busters and also experimented the Mother-of-all bombs on poor Afghan civilians, treating them as “collateral damage’ and afterward the files closed. Isn’t it biggest terrorism of the century…?

As a matter of fact the post WW-II generation of US leaders, specifically the Presidents, CIA and Pentagon chiefs, have developed the psyche of terrorism, in the name of “US Interests”, all around the world, compared to of pre-WW-II era. The majority of hawks, mostly Jews who crept into the important organizations, US administration, CIA, Pentagon, US Justice Dept, FBI, National and Homeland Security, the Police, as a planning and succeeded in their objectives of taking control of these important pillars of US government, and thus running the US government as they want. In other words the Jews are ruling the world that is why a vast difference could be observed between the psyches of the generations of US leaders of pre and the post WW-II generations, as said earlier, and this phenomenon occurred, after the birth of Israel, in 1948. As a matter of fact Israeli intelligence agency, Mossad, is more active in USA than anywhere else in the world as it’s an anytime-life-threat to non-Jewish politicians of USA as the American Jews have spread in almost all the important domestic organizations of the US, like FBI, the Justice Dept; the Police, National/Homeland security, like cancer.