Sadaf Khokhar, a female jurist posted as a District and Sessions Judge at the Malir court in Karachi, has exposed a scam in which water from Karachi court’s RO filter plant was being illegally sold for profit.
After she exposed the scam, lawyers from different groups of the province pitted themselves against the female judge.
She had a sign displayed at the court’s RO filter plant last week on Thursday, May 11, prohibiting the sale of the water.
Given the lack of access to clean drinking water for those who visit this court, the Malir Bar Association requested authorisation to establish a RO plant in 2021.
However, when senior civil judge and supervisory officer Khurram Amin Khan paid a surprise visit to the RO facility last week, he discovered that a man by the name of Hajan Ali was peddling packed bottles of water from it.
Hajan Ali informed the civil judge that he had a contract in place to sell the water with the current elected Malir Bar Association board.
At the plant, the civil judge discovered bottles and packing materials.
Justice Khokhar was then informed by the civil judge about the scam. “[D]istilled water is being sold commercially,” Khokhar said in a letter she wrote to the registrar of the Sindh High Court on May 13.
“The RO plant is donated and being maintained at the [cost of] court/public exchequer (electricity etc).”
The District Bar Association then promptly organised a strike, scheduled for the following day.
The lawyers accused the female judge of harassing and humiliating the lawyers of the Malir Bar and stopping the service of drinking water.
According to the Malir Bar lawyers, the female judge had violated the law,and they had declared a strike that would last until Monday, May 15.
The case then moved on to further courts, with the Sindh Bar Council bringing it before the Chief Justice of the Sindh High Court by May 18.
The Chief Justice Ahmad Ali M Sheikh was informed about the judge’s behaviour by the Sindh Bar Council, the Sindh High Court Bar Association, the Karachi Bar Association, and the Malir Bar Association.
However, they were dissatisfied with the judge’s response.
Amir Saleem, the president of the Karachi Bar, said on May 20, they will go on strike in protest of the Chief Justice’s and District and Sessions Judge Sadaf Khokhar’s lack of cooperation.
On Monday, May 22, the strike was still in effect. Her transfer out is what the solicitors desire.
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