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Overview of Article 197 of the Constitution of Pakistan
The Constitution of Pakistan, established in 1973, serves as the supreme legal document governing the nation’s principles and structure. Within its extensive framework lies Article 197, a crucial provision that addresses the appointment of Additional Judges to High Courts. This article plays a pivotal role in ensuring the judiciary’s efficiency and responsiveness to changing circumstances.
Article 197 States
197. Additional Judges
- At any time when-
- the office of a Judge of a High Court is vacant; or
- a Judge of a High Court is absent or is unable to perform the functions of his office due to any other cause; or
- for any reason it is necessary to increase the number of Judges of a High Court,
the President may, in the manner provided in clause (1) of Article 193, appoint a person qualified for appointment as a Judge of the High Court to be Additional Judge of the Court for such period as the President may determine, being a period not exceeding such period, if any, as may be prescribed by law.
Key Points of Article 197 of the Constitution of Pakistan
- Vacancy in the Office of a Judge: When an office on a High Court becomes vacant, its President is authorized to appoint an Additional Judge so as to maintain its functionality.
- Absence or Inability of a Judge: Should one of our Judges become absent or unable to perform their duties due to any reason, the President can appoint an additional Judge temporarily to fill the position.
- Need for an Increased Judicial Capacity: Recognizing the dynamic nature of legal proceedings, Article 197 allows the President to augment the number of Judges in a High Court for specific reasons deemed necessary.
- Appointment Process: The manner of appointment is defined by Article 193, underscoring the importance of following established legal protocols in selecting qualified candidates for the position of Additional Judge.
- Temporal Limitation: The President’s authority to appoint Additional Judges is subject to temporal constraints, ensuring that the appointments are for a specified period. The duration is determined by the President but must not exceed limits set by law.
Crux of Article 197 of the Constitution of Pakistan
At its core, Article 197 serves as a mechanism to address the inevitable fluctuations in the judicial landscape. By providing a legal framework for the appointment of Additional Judges, it maintains the integrity and efficiency of High Courts, even in the face of unexpected vacancies or increased caseloads. This flexibility ensures that the judiciary can adapt to evolving circumstances while upholding the principles enshrined in the Constitution.
As an integral part of the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan, Article 197 reflects the foresight of the framers who sought to create a resilient and adaptive legal system. It embodies the principle that the judiciary should be equipped to meet the demands of justice swiftly and effectively.
Conclusion: Article 197 of the Constitution of Pakistan
In conclusion, Article 197 stands as a testament to the constitutional foresight embedded in the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan. Its provisions empower the President to address the exigencies of the judiciary, ensuring a seamless and unbroken dispensation of justice. By allowing the appointment of Additional Judges under specific circumstances, it’s article plays a crucial role in maintaining the equilibrium of the judicial system.
Article 197 stands out in Pakistan’s Constitution as an essential thread, providing flexibility to the judiciary to adapt and respond to the ever-evolving legal landscape. Its importance cannot be overstated as it protects fundamental principles of justice while offering necessary flexibility for effective functioning of High Courts.