Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Thursday decided to send a piece of legislation back to the parliament for reconsideration in what is being seen as a bid to avert a head on collision with the government of President Asif Ali Zardari.
The court decided to refer Article 175-A to the parliament. The article, which is part of the 18th Amendment Act, deals with the appointment of judges.
Analysts say that it is a positive development and one that could be seen as the beginning of a settlement between the judiciary and the executive.
The announcement was made by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry while also stated that the verdict on the 18th amendment had been reserved on September 30. The chief justice said that Article 175-A, which deals with the appointment of judges, “violated the independence of the judiciary” and that consultation with the chief justice is necessary for the appointment of judges. The verdict on clause 8, 9 and 10 of Article 175-A was put off till January 2011.
Justice Iftikhar added that the parliamentary committee can reject the judicial committee’s opinion. Analysts said the court had adopted a middle path by sending Article 175-A back to the parliament for reconsideration and not striking it down.