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16th amendment verdict review hearing on Jan 18

BSS . Dhaka
07 Dec 2023 19:11:37 | Update: 07 Dec 2023 19:18:03
16th amendment verdict review hearing on Jan 18
— File Photo

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on Thursday set January 18 for holding hearing on a plea to review the apex court judgment that declared the 16th constitutional amendment illegal.

The Appellate Division headed by Chief Justice Obaidul Hassan passed the order. Attorney General AM Amin Uddin and writ petitioner senior advocate Manjil Mushid were present in the courtroom at the time.

The apex court on November 23 decided that the six-member Appellate Division full bench is 'competent' to hear the plea.

A seven-member Appellate Division full bench on July 3, 2017, pronounced its judgment, upholding a High Court verdict that declared illegal the 16th amendment to the constitution, dismissing a state appeal against it. The state later filed the plea, seeking a review of the apex court judgment.

When the matter came for hearing before the incumbent six-member full bench of the Appellate Division on November 16, a question of whether the bench can hear a plea for reviewing judgment pronounced by a seven-member apex court bench, had arisen.

In this situation, the apex court decided to take opinions of eight senior lawyers in this regard.

The eight experts opined in majority that the six-member full bench can hear the plea, as there are total six judges at the Appellate Division and the full-bench is formed with them all. 

"The number of judges does not matter here as the provision requires a full bench and the number of judges was not mentioned there. So, there is no legal bar in hearing the plea by the incumbent full bench," senior advocate Manzill Murshid told newsmen.

On June 1, 2017, the apex court concluded hearing on the state appeal against the High Court verdict that had declared illegal the 16th amendment to the constitution, which had empowered parliament to remove judges for incapacity or misconduct.

A three-member High Court bench led by Justice Moyeenul Islam Chowdhury delivered the verdict by majority on May 5, 2016. The two other judges were Justice Quazi Reza-Ul Hoque and Justice Md Ashraful Kamal.