Friday, October 20, 2017

BNP-backed lawyers demand sacking of Law Commission chief Khairul Haque

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2017-08-11 22:19:46 BdST

Mahbub Uddin Khokon (File Photo)

The BNP-backed lawyers' organisation Jatiyatabadi Ainjibi Forum has demanded removal and arrest of Law Commission Chairman and former chief justice ABM Khairul Haque for commenting on the 16th amendment verdict.

The Forum has called three-day nationwide demonstrations beginning next Wednesday also against ministers' reaction to the verdict and demanding quick release of the gazette clarifying lower court judges' service rules.

The Forum's General Secretary Mahbub Uddin Khokon announced the protest programmes at a news conference at the BNP headquarters in Dhaka's Naya Paltan on Friday.

He urged the members of the Forum to take part in the programmes at all district bar associations.

"Former chief justice ABM Khairul Haque said in the verdict repealing the 13th amendment that judges should not take any government job after retirement. Now he has become the Law Commission chairman going against his own verdict," Khokon said.

He said Justice Haque is "only an employee of the republic because the position of Law Commission chairman is not a constitutional one".

"His scope of making comments is limited by the code of conduct...He has breached the conditions of his job by organising a press conference," Khokon added and demanded his removal and arrest.

The pro-BNP lawyers' leader also said some ministers have breached their oath of office by criticising the verdict.

"We think they don't have the right to continue in the posts any more. That's why we are announcing these programmes," he said.

BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, among others, was also present at the media call.

The appeals verdict declaring illegal the 16th amendment has been in the centre of discussions after the publication of the full version on Aug 1. The verdict has revived the Supreme Judicial Council to sack top court judges.

The BNP has welcomed the verdict, terming it a 'Magna Carta'.

The Supreme Judicial Council provision was included in the Constitution during BNP founder Ziaur Rahman's military rule.

Former chief justice Haque on Wednesday heavily criticised some of the observations made by Chief Justice SK Sinha in the 16th amendment verdict.

The verdict appeared 'preconceived' to the Law Commission chief. Some of Chief Justice Sinha's comments on MPs were 'irrelevant' and the terms he used were 'immature', he added.