Speech of Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan

Islamabad: Mr. Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday: Brother judges;
President, supreme court bar association;
Office bearers, supreme court bar association;
Members of the bar;
Ladies and gentlemen.

Assalam o Alaikum!

I am happy that the Supreme Court Bar Association has arranged tonight’s dinner in honour of Mr. Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday, former Judge, Supreme Court of Pakistan to pay tributes to him for the services rendered by him during his illustrious judicial career in the superior judiciary of Pakistan, spreading over more than two decades, from 1988 to 2001 in the Lahore High Court, and from 2002 to 2010 in the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

I also take this opportunity to pay tributes to Ms. Asma Jehangir, the outgoing President of the Supreme Court Bar Association. During her presidentship, she strove hard to serve the legal fraternity and raise the professional standards of the lawyers community. She remained steadfast to protect and defend the supremacy of the Constitution and independence of judiciary.

I also take this opportunity to congratulate the newly elected President and other office bearers of the Supreme Court Bar Association. As we all know, Mr. Yasin Azad also played a prominent role in upholding the rule of law and supremacy of the Constitution.

I hope that during his tenure, useful and productive interaction and cordial relations between the Bench and the Bar will continue to attain the goals of judicial administration.

Coming to tonight’s guest of honour, Hon’ble Mr. Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday, I must say at the outset that he is a thorough breed embodiment of a judge both pedigree wise and due to his acquired professionalism. His father, (late) Justice Muhammad Siddique, remained a prominent Judge of the High Court.

Justice Ramday was married to the daughter of Justice Yaqoob Ali Khan, a former Chief Justice of Pakistan. He was a great believer in democracy and as member of the Bench, declared a previous martial law imposed by a usurping general to be ultra vires of the Constitution in Asma Jilani’s case (PLD 1972 SC 139).

Therefore, the other usurping General (Ziaul Haq), anticipating that his illegal actions might be overturned by the apex Court, which was then headed by Justice Yaqoob Ali Khan, by the stroke of his pen struck off certain provisions of the Constitution and forced him to leave office on 22nd July, 1977.

The action was taken in the aftermath of acceptance of Petition in the Supreme Court, filed by Begum Nusrat Bhutto and challenging the vires of the Martial Law regime.

Justice Ramday, as a judge, displayed complete independence in his judgments from the very beginning. He soon earned profound respect from his colleagues at the Bench as well as the members of the Bar to be an upright, honest, independent and unapproachable Judge.

He, as Judge of High Court and the Supreme Court, proved himself as a Judge with extensive knowledge of law in all branches; whose integrity was beyond an iota of doubt and who was extremely quick in understanding complex issues.

He never compromised or wavered on principles. His early training and education in a religion oriented environment inculcated in him the Islamic values which made him a firm believer in the teachings of Islam. He has a great deal of knowledge, not just in the field of Islamic fiqh and jurisprudence but also comparative religious thought and philosophy including the scripts of revealed religions.

Justice Ramday established a Fund in the Supreme Court for the betterment of low paid employees of the Court. During his tenure as Ad-hoc Judge, he decided not to receive salary, which he donated to the aforesaid Fund.

The judgments delivered by Justice Ramday are not only a source of knowledge for the new comers in the legal fraternity but the judges also seek support and guidance from them. Even after his retirement, we get benefit from his vast knowledge and experience in the field of law and Islamic Jurisprudence.

Recently, in a case involving the question of registration of children having unidentified parentage by the National Deta Base Authority, the Court sought the assistance of Justice Ramday. He, in the light of the Constitution, laws and the Injunctions of Islam, provided the court with the detailed comparative study on the issue.

Justice Ramday authored many landmark judgments which had deep impact on the independence of judiciary and the upholding of the rule of law in the country. In addition to his services in the judicial field, Justice Ramday has remained a visiting professor at the Punjab University Law College, Lahore and is presently a member of the visiting faculty of the Civil Services Academy of Pakistan and the National Institute of Public Administration (NIPA) at Lahore since 1982.

He regularly delivers lectures at the National Defence College, Islamabad, the Administrative Staff College of Pakistan, the Naval War College and the Air Force War College of Pakistan. He has also been on the board of governors of the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and the Lahore School of Economics and is now the chairperson of Shalamar Medical and Dental College (SMDC, LUMS).

Justice Ramday has been a member of the Syndicate of the Islamia University, Bahawalpur; the Agriculture University, Faisalabad; and the Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad. He has also been a member of the Board of Governors of the Air University and the University of Modern Languages and Disciplines, Islamabad.

In May 2005, in recognition of his services in the field of legal education and the administration of justice, he was honoured with an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws by the Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar. He gave a masterful discourse on inter-faith harmony at the Gurukul Kangri University, Haridwar, and the Rotary International South Asia Goodwill Summit, 2007 held at Delhi.

In the end, I would like to express my deep appreciation for the Supreme Court Bar Association for arranging this beautiful evening providing us with an opportunity to share some golden moments with our brother justice Ramday.

Thank You.

For more information, contact:
Shahid Hussain Kamboyo
Public Relations Officer
Supreme Court of Pakistan
Tel: +9251 920 4184
Fax: +9251 920 1001
Email: pro_scp@yahoo.com

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