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JS in unison to challenge 16th Amendment verdict, observations legally

Published : Thursday, 14 September, 2017 at 1:31 AM Count : 96

The Jatiyo Sangsad (JS) last night unanimously adopted a resolution seeking appropriate legal measures for scrapping the Supreme Court (SC) verdict that declared ultra vires the 16th 2amendment to the constitution and the unconstitutional, objectionable and irrelevant observations made by the Chief Justice about the Jatiya Sangsad and other important matters in the 16th Amendment
case.

The House adopted the resolution by voice votes on completion of a detailed discussion on a proposal moved Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal lawmaker Moin Uddin Khan Badal under the Rule 147 (1) of the Rules of Procedure of the parliament with Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury in the chair.

While moving the proposal, the JSD lawmaker Badal came down heavily on the SC judges particularly the Chief Justice for what he called the ultra vires verdict and irrelevant observations in the 16th Amendment case.

The proposal says, "The Jatiya Sangsad express the view that let the House take appropriate legal measures for scrapping the declaration of ultra vires the 16thn Amendment to the Constitution in the verdict of the 16th Amendment case and also striking down the unconstitutional, objectionable and irrelevant observations made by the honourable Chief Justice about the Jatiya Sangsad and other important matters in the judgment."

Moin Uddin Khan Badal said the verdict of the Sixteenth Amendment has diminished the freedom of the judiciary, adding, "The Chief Justice has said that the Article 96 has been repealed. He cannot prove that the parliament has broken its limits."

He said the parliament does not want to interfere in the freedom of the judiciary in any way.

Taking part in the discussion, the lawmakers from both the treasury and opposition benches supported the resolution moved by Moin Uddin Khan Badal and urged the law minister to take practical steps in this regard.

They said that Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is our inspiration during the liberation war.

They said the Appellate Division's pronouncement that the Jatiya Sangsad has no power to remove Supreme Court judges is unfortunate and beyond its jurisdiction.

The lawmakers said that the House has the power to remove any judge on the grounds of their gross misconduct or incapacity as the President appoint judges while the President himself could be impeached by the Jatiya Sangsad as parliament members are the elected representatives of the people.

Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Anisul Haque said the 16th Amendment was brought to ensure a transparent process for removal of the higher court judges by the parliament side with protecting the independence of the 5judiciary. "When the 16th Amendment was passed, I assured enacting another law to implement properly this provision and for this a draft was accordingly sent
to the Chief Justice."

Anisul Haque said, Bangladesh Jatiya Sangsad has the power to make any law
and amend the constitution and the 16th Amendment to the constitution was such
an action.

The minister categorically declared in the House that this verdict will not go without a final legal challenge.

The minister said the seat of the Chief Justice is an institution and anyone who posses this position needs talking less, but dispensing justice.

Taking part in the discussion, Leader of the Opposition Rowshan Ershad supported the motion and called for maintaining the dignity of all the three organs of the state and mutual respects for each other.

Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu said Amicus Curie Dr Kamal Hossain gave false information to the court regarding the issue.

He criticized Ziaur Rahman for introducing the Supreme Judicial Council through a martial law ordinance and regretted that the SC judges supported the
ordinance.

Terming the judgment as 'ill motivated', Agriculture Minister Begum Matia Chowdhury said "I fully support the legal steps which would be taken to cancel the unconstitutional and irrelevant observations made in the judgment."

Such kind of motivated judgment was seen in the autocratic regime in Pakistan and also seen in various atmosphere including the martial law period, she said.

Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed sharply criticized the judgment on the 16th Amendment and said vattempts by anybody to humiliate the parliament are tantamount to disrespecting the nation as the members of the parliament are elected representatives of the people.

He blasted the Chief Justice (CJ) for making a reference to the Pakistani court proceedings apparently to issue a threat to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He said the CJ's remark was totally unacceptable as there was no reaction in Pakistan after ousting the elected prime.

Quoting Asma Jahangir's remarks on the judicial process of Pakistan, he said there is no justice in Pakistan for the two reasons -one is for the judiciary system and other is military forces.

Supporting for the resolution moved by Moin Uddin Khan Badal, he urged the law minister to take practical steps in this regard, adding, "Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is our inspiration during the liberation war."

Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim said those who believe in Bangladesh and its independence cannot say anything adverse about Bangabandhu, adding, "But he (Chief Justice) said many things irrelevant to Bangabandhu."

Deputy Speaker Fazle Rabbi Mia urged the law minister to take appropriate legal action in this matter. He said that the observations made in the verdict are beyond the jurisdiction of the SC.

Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon said, "The verdict as well as the observations are 'motivated'.

State Minister for Labour and Employment Mujibul Haque said the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court has no jurisdiction to pass judgment on this matter.

Among others, Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Hoque, Water Resource Minister Anisul Islam Mahmud, Dr Dipu Moni, Fazilatun Nesa Bappi,  Tahazib Alam Siddiqui, Rustam Ali Farazi, took part in the general discussion.

BSS/QH
 





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