LHC asks judges in Punjab province to declare assets by Jul 31

LAHORE, June 27: The Lahore High Court has directed all judges of the lower judiciary and court officials in Pakistan’s Punjab province to furnish their declaration of income and assets for the fiscal 2011-12 by July 31.
The registrar of the High Court issued a circular directing all district and sessions judges, additional district and sessions judges, senior civil judges, civil judges and other officials to submit the declarations by next month end.
“The judges have been directed to give details of assets, including movable and immovable property in their own name, their wives and children,” the circular said.
The registrar has also sought details of the expenditure on the education of children of judges and they have been asked to explain how they are meeting these expenses if they exceed a certain limit.
The move comes against the backdrop of a crackdown on corruption by the Supreme Court at the behest of Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry.
However, the top judge came under a cloud after real estate tycoon Malik Riaz Hussian claimed that he had paid the Chief Justice’s son over Rs 342 million to influence cases in the apex court.
As politicians, especially Parliamentarians and provincial lawmakers, are required to declare their assets, the judiciary seems to be following suit, observers said.
Some politicians of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party described the High Court’s circular as a “judicial gimmick”, saying the judiciary had been indulging in politics in the recent past.
The apex court last week disqualified former premier Yousuf Raza Gilani following his conviction for contempt for refusing to revive graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari. (PTI)


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