Table of Contents
Overview of Article 270 of the Constitution of Pakistan
Article 270 stands as a temporary validation mechanism granted to the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). This provision empowers the Parliament to pass laws validating Proclamations, President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, and other laws enacted between March 25, 1969 and December 19, 1971.
Article 270 States
270. Temporary validation of certain laws, etc
- Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) may by law made in the manner prescribed for legislations for a matter in Part I of the Federal Legislative List validate all Proclamations, President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders and other laws made between the twenty-fifth day of March, one thousand nine hundred and sixty- nine and the nineteenth day of December, one thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (both days inclusive).
- Notwithstanding a judgment of any court, a law made by Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) under clause (1) shall not be questioned in any court on any ground whatsoever.
- Notwithstanding the provisions of clause (1), and a judgment of any court to the contrary, for a period of two years from the commencing day, the validity of all such instruments as are referred to in clause (1) shall not be called in question before any court on any ground whatsoever.
- All orders made, proceedings taken and acts done by any authority, or any person, which were made, taken or done, or purported to have been made, taken or done, between the twenty- fifth day of March, one thousand nine hundred and sixty-nine and nineteenth day of December, one thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (both days inclusive), in exercise of powers derived from any President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, enactments, notifications, rules, orders or by-laws, or in execution of any order made or sentence passed by any authority in the exercise or purported exercise of power as aforesaid shall, notwithstanding any judgment of any court, be deemed to be and always to have been validly made, taken or done, so however that any such order, proceeding or act may be declared invalid by Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) at any time within a period of two years from the commencing day by resolution of both Houses, or in case of disagreement between the two Houses, by such resolution passed at a joint sitting and shall not be called in question before any court on any ground whatsoever.
Key Points of Article 270 of the Constitution of Pakistan
- Temporal Scope: The article identifies a critical time frame – March 25, 1969, to December 19, 1971 – during which certain laws and orders were promulgated.
- Validation Power of Parliament: Majlis-e-Shoora gains authority to pass laws validating instruments enacted during the specified period.
- Non-Justiciability: A distinctive feature prohibits any court from questioning the validity of these laws, irrespective of prior judgments.
- Time Limit on Challenge: The provision introduces a two-year window, during which the validity of the mentioned instruments cannot be contested in any court.
- Deemed Validity of Actions: Actions taken in line with the laws during the specified period are deemed valid, unless declared otherwise by Parliament within two years.
- Parliamentary Discretion: The article places the power of validation and potential invalidation in the hands of Parliament, emphasizing the role of legislative resolution.
Crux of Article 270 of the Constitution of Pakistan
At its core, Article 270 addresses a unique historical juncture, providing a legal framework to navigate through the laws and orders implemented during a crucial period. The provision empowers the legislative body to validate actions that might otherwise be subject to legal scrutiny. The non-justiciability clause shields these validated laws from challenges in any court, emphasizing a temporal limitation on questioning their validity.
The discretion granted to Parliament allows for a dynamic approach to legal validation, ensuring that the historical context is duly considered. The provision not only acknowledges the actions taken during the specified period but also instills a mechanism for retrospective validation or invalidation, highlighting the evolving nature of constitutional interpretation.
Conclusion: Article 270 of the Constitution of Pakistan
In conclusion, Article 270 of the Constitution of Pakistan is a legal anchor navigating the nation through a specific historical timeframe. It embodies a delicate balance between validating past actions and preserving the sanctity of the legal system. The provision, although specific to a particular period, mirrors the constitutional flexibility needed during transitional phases.
As we delve into the intricacies of the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan, Article 270 emerges as a testament to the adaptability of legal frameworks. Its legacy lies not only in validating past legal instruments but also in serving as a reminder of the constitutional foresight embedded in the fabric of Pakistan’s governance.