Ex-CJP Who Sacked Sharif: Who's Gulzar Ahmed, Imran Khan's Caretaker PM Pick?

Ahmed was sworn-in as the 27th chief justice of Pakistan in December 2019 and held the post till February 2022.

3 min read
Hindi Female

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday, 4 April, nominated former Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed as the caretaker Prime Minister of the country.

This comes after Khan was de-notified as the prime minister of Pakistan on 3 April after the dissolution of the country's National Assembly by President Arif Alvi.

The proposal of Ahmed's name as caretaker PM came after a letter was written by the president to Khan as well as the Leader of the Opposition, Shehbaz Sharif, to propose names for the post of caretaker PM until fresh elections are held in the country.

Who Is Gulzar Ahmed?

Ahmed was sworn-in as the 27th chief justice of Pakistan in December 2019 after the retirement of Asif Saeed Khosa. He held the post till February 2022.

Ahmed enrolled as an advocate in 1986 after obtaining a law degree from SM Law College in Karachi, and joined the Sindh High Court two years later. He became an advocate in Pakistan's Supreme Court in 2001.

During his career as an advocate, he handled cases related to civil and corporate law, and donned the cap of a legal advisor to several multinational corporations, banks, and domestic companies.

After a stint as a judge of the Sindh High Court from 2002-11, Ahmed was elevated to Pakistan's Supreme Court on 16 November, 2011, and became its chief justice eight years later.

Nawaz Sharif's Disqualification 

Ahmed was a part of the five-judge bench that disqualified Pakistan's former PM Nawaz Sharif from the premiership of the country in 2017. The case involving Sharif was related to alleged corruption by the former PM disclosed in the Panama Papers, which were leaked by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) in 2016.

The verdict was issued unanimously by all five judges on the bench.

The case was taken up as a response to petitions filed by Imran Khan as well as the chiefs of the Awami Muslim League and the Jamaat-e-Islami.

In another case in 2021, a bench of the Supreme Court led by CJP Ahmed said in an order that Justice Qazi Faez Isa was barred from hearing cases regarding Imran Khan.

The reasoning for such a decision was that Isa had already filed a petition against Khan regarding the proposed plan to distribute a development fund involving Rs 500 million among lawmakers of Khan's Pakistan-Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

Anti-Establishment Remarks

Apart from the landmark Panama Papers case, Ahmed is best known for making bold, anti-establishment remarks, and criticising Pakistani government officials and civil servants.

His boldness was clearly evident during the hearing of a case in 2019, in which he said that Karachi was the "worst city" in the country, and slammed the provincial government of Sindh for its lack of efforts.

"The Sindh government doesn't even have a solution to any problem," Justice Ahmed remarked orally while hearing the case as per a report by DAWN, adding that the condition of the government was "very bad".

He also said that fugitives had the freedom to roam around freely in Karachi, adding that there was no indication of a government in the city.

Under Article 224 of the Constitution of Pakistan, Khan can continue as the prime minister for 15 days till the appointment of a caretaker PM.

(With inputs from DAWN.)

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