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No 'political speech at hearing': SC

By bdnews24.com
22nd-May-2017       
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The Appellate Division has asked the State not to make any 'political speech' at the hearing on an appeal against the High Court verdict declaring illegal legislators' power to remove judges.
When the lawmakers were given the power through the 16th Amendment to the Constitution in September, 2014, it created a heat in the political arena and Parliament.
Some lawyers filed a writ petition challenging the amendment and the High Court declared it illegal in May last year.
The heated arguments continued in hearings of the appeal against the High Court verdict. The latest was between Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha and Attorney General Mahbubey Alam earlier this month.  
Before the hearing resumed at the seven-judge Appellate Division bench headed by Justice Sinha Sunday, the court told Attorney General Alam: "This is a very important case. Please don't give any political speech and do not side talk."
"The court's decorum must be maintained. You should control your emotions."       
The judges then asked Mahbubey Alam to name someone as amicus curiae if he wanted to add or give suggestions if he had any.   
"I won't give any suggestions," replied the attorney general.
The court said it would not hear any political submission, but only constitutional issues.
"What will happen if issues related to Bangabandhu come constitutionally? Besides this, political issues will surely come if we speak about constitutional matters," it said.
The power to remove judges was vested in Parliament in the 1972 Constitution enacted after independence. This power was transferred to the president through the 4th Amendement during Bangabandhu's tenure.
During Ziaur Rahman's rule, the power was handed to the Supreme Judicial Council through the 5th Amendment, which was later repealed by the Supreme Court. The power returned to Parliament through the 16th Amendment.
After the court's instructions before Sunday's hearing on the 16th Amendment, Additional Attorney General Murad Reza started delivering arguments.
Later the court adjourned the hearing until Monday.
After the hearing, Murad Reza told the media he had mainly argued that the writ petition filed by some lawyers against the 16th Amendment was 'not maintainable because it was not a public interest litigation'.  
"The High Court overturned the Appellate Division verdict, though the High Court is bound to follow every verdict by the Appellate Division," he added.

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