High Courts Told Not To Publicly Snub District Judges
The Supreme Court passed a judgment on Saturday prohibiting high courts from passing strictures against and reprimanding district judicial officers in open court over their misconduct in a trial, stating that this responsibility should be carried out confidentially by the respective chief justices.
After the high courts have informed the relevant chief justice through a confidential report, disciplinary action can be carried out by them or an administrative committee, remarked Justice Mansoor Ali Shah.
This decision was taken by a three-member SC bench, comprising Justice Shah, Justice Qazi Mohammad Amin Ahmed, and headed by Justice Manzoor Ahmed Malik, as a response to the appeal filed by Nusrat Yasmin, Additional District and Sessions Judge, Peshawar.
Nusrat Yasmin filed an appeal against the Peshawar High Court’s strictures against her professional misconduct for disrespecting the higher judiciary and displaying limited knowledge of the law. She wanted these records to be expunged. Accepting the request, the apex court stated that the alleged misconduct should be retracted and not become part of her service record in any form.
The ruling to change the structure of strictures accompanied this decision. Justice Shah said that it is within the domain of the high courts to supervise the district judiciary under Articles 202 and 203 of the constitution. However, the method being currently employed by the high courts goes against their dignity and essence, and this ruling is a corrective guideline to ensure that their spirit isn’t compromised upon by the existing structures of service law.