Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Human shield prevents forcible eviction of Justice Shahid Siddiqui!

Attempts to forcibly evict Justice Shahid Siddiqui from his official residence: Civil society activists, lawyers and retired judges – including Asma Jahangir, Hina Jilani, Asad Jamal and many others stayed outside his house all night (in the bitter Lahore cold).

They are rotating some 40-50 protesters outside the house at any given time forming a human shield to prevent the Punjab government from forcibly evicting him, said Hamid Khan (former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association). He said that there are only two non-PCO judges living in government housing in Lahore's GOR, Justice Shahid Siddiqui and Justice Ijaz Ahmed Choudhry – the others live in their own residences.

Several student protesters from the lahore press club protest later joined the vigil outside Justice Siddiqui's house. By4.30 pm, scores of student activists had gathered there. "The Justice also came out to speak to the protesters and lauded the efforts of the lawyers, students, media and activists. The protest went ahead despite threats from the police to arrest students from the universities involved."

When the current 'CJ' sent eviction orders to them (in violation of their own rules, which state that even on forced retirement an employee is given six months notice to find alternate accommodation), Shahid Siddiqui responded by challenging his authority and serving a contempt of court notice on him (posted yesterday on this list).

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