CJ reshuffles 25 benches, no bench given to Justice NizamulStaff Correspondent
The chief justice has reconstituted 20 two-judge and 5 single-judge High Court benches without allocating a bench for Justice Md Nizamul Huq, who resigned as International Crimes Tribunal 1 chair on December 11 after his Skype conversations with a Brussels-based Bangladeshi expatriate about war crimes trial had become public.
The changes in the jurisdiction of the 25 courts will come into force today when the court reopens after three weeks’ vacation, according to the cause list published on Tuesday.
Jurisdictions of the 20 two-judge benches remain almost unchanged but all the junior judges of the benches have been changed, lawyers and court officials said.
Jurisdictions of five other judges, who earlier presided over two-judge benches, will now involve hearing civil matters singly.
Contacted, Justice Nizamul Huq told New Age, ‘I am still a High Court judge. I will not talk with the media. If you want to know about my leave, you may contact the registrar’s office.’
Supreme Court registrar AKM Shamsul Islam told New Age, ‘Justice Nizamul Huq definitely remains on leave as his name has not appeared in the High Court Division’s cause-list published on Tuesday.’
Sources in the chief justice’s office said that Justice Nizamul Huq had informed the office that he would remain on leave.
Neither the Supreme Court registrar nor the chief justice’s office could say anything about the duration of his leave.
After his resignation, Justice Nizamul had been on leave in December 12–13 while the three-week vacation of the Supreme Court began on December 14, sources in the Supreme Court said.
The Bangladesh Bar Council vice-chairman, Khandker Mahbub Hossain, at a press briefing on Sunday demanded resignation of Justice Nizamul Huq immediately saying that he had breached oath and the code of conduct of Supreme Court judges by consulting with Ahmed Ziauddin, a Bangladesh origin lawyer now living in Brussels, on the on-going war crimes trial through the reported Skype conversations.
The statutory regulatory body of the country’s lawyers also urged the chef justice not to give bench to Justice Nizamul Huq and demanded initiating a Supreme Judicial Council inquiry against the ‘controversial judge’ and keeping him out of court until the inquiry is completed.
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Date:Wednesday, 2nd January, 2013