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Justice Saqib Nisar

Justice Saqib Nisar
 
 
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Profile
Mian Saqib Nisar, is the 25th and current Chief Justice of Pakistan, in office since 31 December 2016. He was elevated to Supreme Court under martial law administration. He will retire on 17 January 2019.

He remains a visiting professor of law at the Punjab University where he provides instructions on constitutional law. Ascended as the Justice of the Supreme Court on 18 February 2010, he was elevated as chief justice when Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali reached his constitutionally set retiring age.

Early life and education
Saqib Nisar's father was Mian Nisar, an advocate belonged to a Arain family of Lahore. He was educated at the Cathedral High School in Lahore where he matriculated and enrolled at Government College University (GCU) where he graduated with a B.A. degree in 1977. He later went to attend the Punjab University where he secured LLB in civil law in 1980.

While being an undergraduate student at the GCU Lahore, he was selected to be a member of the international delegation representing Pakistan in International Youth Conference held in Tripoli in Libya in 1973.

Career
Early career
Soon after his graduation with a law degree, Nisar enrolled as an advocate and began private practice of law at the District Court in 1980. In 1982, he was called to the bar at the Punjab Bar Council and was enrolled as an advocate of the Lahore High Court.[9] He practiced law as an advocate for a decade until he was invited and called by the Supreme Court Bar Association, subsequently relocating in Islamabad. In 1991, he was elected as a Secretary-General of the Lahore High Court.

In 1992, he secured his fellowship at the Supreme Court Bar Association and elevated as an Advocate Supreme Court which he remained until 1998.

On 29 March 1997, he was appointed as Law Secretary at the Ministry of Justice and Law (MoJL) - a chief bureaucratic position inside the law and justice ministry. His appointment as the Law Secretary of Pakistan was nominated and confirmed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif immediately after being elected in general elections held in 1997. His appointment as a law secretary was noted as the first time in the history of the country that some one from the Bar had been appointed to such post.

On 22 May 1998, he was elevated as judge at the Lahore High Court after a nomination summary sent by Prime Minister Sharif, only to be confirmed as judge of Lahore High Court by then-President Rafiq Tarrar. As a judge in Lahore High Court, he heard and passed judgements on many important cases involving the resolution of disputes on the civil matters, commercial banking disputes, and tax evasions/avoidances.

In 2000, Nisar was among one of those judges at the Lahore High Court, who when given chance to either resign or accept military provisional constitutional order enacted by Military Dictator General Musharraf, took the oath under the new provisional constitutional order and was continue to allow hearing cases at the Lahore High Court.

Supreme Court Justice
On 13 February 2010, his nomination to be elevated as the justice of the Supreme Court was initially rejected by the then-President Asif Ali Zardari in spite of recommendation made by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry. President Zardari instead elevated Justice K.M. Sharif that ultimately supersedes senior-most Justice Nisar for the promotion, appointing the latter as acting Chief Justice of Lahore High Court.

Upon hearing these developments, Chief Justice Chaudhry suspended the appointment order and marked such actions as "unconstitutional", using his constitutional powers granted by the Judicial Commission.

On 19 February 2010, Justice Nisar, alongside with A.S. Khosa, were sworn as justices of the Supreme Court in a simple ceremony.

Notable cases
He was a member of the Supreme Court bench which heard the case against 21st Constitutional Amendment, the amendment which authorized the establishment of military courts to hear terrorism cases after the incident which killed 141 people including 132 children in a school in Peshawar on 16 December 2014.

He also heard the case where Pakistan Railways's land worth Rs10 billion was allotted to Royal Palm Golf Club by Musharraf government which federal government of Nawaz Sharif wanted back in 2014.

He headed the bench which heard the case of Jehangir Khan Tareen and Imran Khan.

Judicial activism and nexus with military
Justice Nisar has been criticized by some notable academics, journalists and politicians for his judicial activism and over-involvement in day to day affairs of the government. He is accused of being in alliance with Pakistan's military establishment against Pakistan Muslim League (N), Nawaz Sharif and his government which was ousted in July 2017.

He also ordered removal of illegally-provided security from all non-related people, most of who had been part of the previous government (and who had refused to return their security at the end of their term) including PML(N), JUI, etc. which was seen by many political parties as political victimization. Their claim was further strengthened when a leader of ANP, Mr Bilour was killed by suicide bomber on July 10, 2018 in Peshawar during election campaign. Father of Mr. Bilour was killed in 2012 via similar attack by TTP. Another candidate Raisani and 127 others were killed on July 13, 2018. Little was known that in addition to extra-security being provided, Justice Nisar was among the personalities responsible for organizing peace and order in the elction 2018.

Academia
Justice Nisar is known for his educational interests in legal education, and is currently tenuring as visiting professor of law at the Law College of the Punjab University where he provides instructions on the constitutional law and civil law procedure. Justice Nisar attended and represented Pakistan in the international conference on "India and Pakistan at Fifty" held in Wilton Park in United Kingdom; he also led judicial delegations on conferences held in The Philippines and Switzerland.

In 2009, Justice Nisar authored a paper on Islam and democracy and presented the paper to the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters in Oslo, Norway, and offered discussion on the "Role of the Courts in Islamic Democratic Society."

 
 
 
 
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