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The News - 4 days ago

Women judges to be part of SC in near future: CJ

LAHORE: Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa on Sunday hinted at inclusion of women judges in the Supreme Court in near future.Addressing the concluding session of the 3rd Women Judges Conference , held by Punjab Judicial Academy (PJA) and the Lahore High Court (LHC) here, the CJ praised performance of women judges deputed at district and high courts. Our women judges have proven their abilities through their verdicts and, by the way, they have handled complex cases, said Justice Khosa. We have 300 women judges in district courts and we hope to have at least one or two in the Supreme Court soon. I had an opportunity to propose two names and they are being actively considered. The role of women in our society is vital and it is increasing day by day, he added.The CJ spoke about how the working environment affected women judges in Pakistan as he urged them to remain confident in their abilities and relaxed in their demeanour. He said some of them were passing harsher judgments trying to prove a point to their male counterparts. Women judges have to take certain steps to survive in the male-dominated environment, said Justice Khosa, But all judgments should be passed according to the law. Be firm but also be fair. The CJ said Pakistan s courts have been working for protection of women s rights for the past 50 years, adding that for the country s prosperity, it was essential to ensure that women are empowered in all walks of life.He cited the example of inheritance in which the Supreme Court had taken the initiative and said that if someone was denied their inheritance even hundreds of years ago, she could still establish her rights today. The period of limitation will not be considered and she will be given her rights so that justice prevails, he said.Additionally, the top judge shared that in most instances where concessions were given by courts in the country to women and in most of the efforts made to reinterpret the law and to extend legal rights to women, judgements were authored by judges who only had daughters.He shared that he had the opportunity to propose two judges names for the apex court and during the selection process, some female candidates were being actively considered . We should make women independent in other spheres of society as well.He highlighted that female judges should work in a relaxed environment and should not present themselves as a stern judge. A female judge is respected not because of her strict judgments but because of her behaviour. Courtroom s environment depends upon your behaviour that doesn t require unnecessary strictness. Judges are entitled to dispense justice, and if they don t, there isn t any difference between you and a common man. CJ Khosa remarked: Female judges should free themselves from mental stress and discharge their duties in a convenient environment.

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