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Article: 270A Affirmation of President’s Orders, etc

1[270A. Affirmation of President’s Orders, etc.—(1)  The Proclamation  of the fifth day of July, 1977, all President’s Orders, Ordinances, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, including the Referendum Order, 1984 (P.O. 11 of 1984), 2[****] the Revival of the Constitution of 1973 Order, 1985 (P.O. No 14 of 1985), the Constitution (Second Amendment) Order 1985 (P.O. No. 20 of 1985), the Constitution (Third Amendment) Order, 1985 (P.O. No. 24 of 1985), and all other laws made between the fifth day of July, 1977, and the date on which this Article comes into force are hereby affirmed, adopted and declared,  notwithstanding any judgment of any court, to have been validly made by competent authority and, notwithstanding anything contained in the Constitution, shall not be called in question in any court on any ground whatsoever:

Provided that a President’s Order, Martial Law Regulation or Martial Law Order made after the thirtieth day of September, 1985, shall be confined only to making such provisions as facilitate, or are incidental to, the revocation of the proclamation of the fifth day of July, 1977.

(2)  All orders made, proceedings taken and acts done by any authority or by any person, which were made, taken or done, or purported to have been made, taken or done, between the fifth day of July, 1977, and the date on which this Article comes into force, in exercise of the powers derived from any Proclamation, President’s Orders, Ordinances, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, enactments, notifications, rules, orders or bye-laws, or in execution of or in compliance with any order made or sentence passed by any authority in the exercise or purported exercise of powers as aforesaid, shall, notwithstanding any judgment of any Court, be deemed to be and always to have been validly made, taken or done and shall not be called in question in any Court on any ground whatsoever.

(3)  All President’s Orders, Ordinances, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, enactments, notifications, rules, orders or bye-laws in force immediately before the date on which this Article comes into force shall continue in force until altered, repealed or amended by competent authority.

Explanation.—In this clause, “competent authority” means.—

(a)  in respect of President’s Orders, Ordinances, Martial law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, and enactments, the appropriate Legislature; and

(b)  in respect of notifications, rules, orders and bye-laws, the authority in which the power to make, alter, repeal or amend the same vests under the law.

(4)  No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings shall lie in any Court against any authority or any person, for or on account of or in respect of any order made, proceedings taken or act done whether in the exercise or purported exercise of the powers referred to in clause (2) or in execution of or in compliance with orders made or sentences passed in exercise or purported exercise of such powers.

(5)  For the purposes of clauses (1), (2) and (4), all orders made, proceedings taken, acts done or purporting to be made, taken or done by any authority or person shall be deemed to have been made, taken or done in good faith and for the purpose intended to be served thereby.

[(6) The laws referred to in clause (1) may be amended by the appropriate Legislature in the manner provided for amendment of such laws.]

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Footnotes:

1.  Section 19 of the Constitution (Eight Amendment) Act, 1985 (18 of 1985), substituted Art. 270A, in its present form, (w.e.f. December 30, 1985), in place of Art. 270A as inserted by item 52 of the schedule to P.O. No. 14 of 1985, (w.e.f. March 2, 1985), that read :

“270A. Validation of President’s Order, etc.–(1)  The Proclamation of the fifth day of July, 1977, all President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders and all other laws made between the fifth day of July, 1977, and the date on which this article comes into force, are  hereby declared, notwithstanding any judgment of any Court, to have been validly made by competent authority and, notwithstanding anything contained in the Constitution, shall not be called in question in any Court on any ground whatsoever.

(2)  All orders made, proceedings taken and acts done by any authority, or by any person, which were made, taken or done, or purported to have been made, taken or done, between the fifth day of July, 1977, and the date on which this Article comes into force, in exercise of the powers derived from any Proclamation, President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations,  Martial Law Orders, enactments, notifications, rules, orders or bye-laws, or in execution of or in compliance with any order made or sentence passed by any authority in the exercise or purported exercise of powers as aforesaid, shall, notwithstanding any judgment of any court, be deemed to be and always to have been validly made, taken or done and shall not be called in question in any Court on any ground whatsoever.

(3)  All President’s Orders, Martial Law Regulations, Martial Law Orders, enactments, notifications, rules, orders for bye-laws in force immediately before the date on which this Article comes into force shall continue in force until altered, repealed or amended by competent authority.

(4)  No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings shall lie in any court against any authority or any person, for or on account of or in respect of any order made, proceedings taken or act done whether in the exercise or purported exercise of the powers referred to in clause (2)  or in execution  of or in compliance with orders made or sentences passed in exercise or purported exercise of such powers.

(5)  For the purposes of clauses (1), (2) and (4), all orders made, proceedings taken, acts done or purporting to be made, taken or done by any authority or person shall be deemed to have been made, taken or done in good faith and for the purpose intended to be served  thereby.

a*[(6) The President’s Orders referred to in clause (1) shall not be altered, repealed or amended without the previous sanction of the President.]

Explanation. —  In this, Article, “President’s Orders” includes “President and Chief Martial Law Administrator’s Orders, and Chief Martial Law Administrator’s Orders”.

a*. Section 95(b) of the Constitution (Eighteenth Amendment) Act, 2010 (10 of 2010), substituted clause (6) of Art. 270A, in its present form, (w.e.f. April 19, 2010), in place of the clause as substituted by Section 4 of the Constitution (Second Amendment) Act, 1985, P.O. No. 20 of 1985, (w.e.f. March 17, 1985), that read :

(6)  Such of the President’s Orders and Ordinances referred to in clause (1) as are specified in the seventh Schedule may be amended in the manner provided for amendment of the Constitution, and all other laws referred to in the said clause may be amended by the appropriate Legislature in the manner provided for amendment of such laws.

Explanation.—In this Article, “President’s Orders” includes “President and Chief Martial Law Administrator’s Orders” and “Chief Martial Law Administrator’s Orders”.

Clause (6) of Art. 270A as first substituted by section 19 of the Constitution (Eighth Amendment) Act, 1985, (18 of 1985), (w.e.f. December 30, 1985), read :

“(6) Any of the President’s Orders referred to in clause (1) may be amended in the manner provided for amendment of the Constitution.”

2. Section 95(a) of the Constitution (Eighteenth Amendment) Act, 2010 (10 of 2010), omitted the words, commas, brackets and figures “under  which,  in  consequence  of  the  result  of the referendum held on the nineteenth day of December 1984, General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq became the President of Pakistan on the day of the first meeting of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament)  in  joint  sitting  for  the  term  specified  in clause (7) of Article 41,” from clause (1) of Art. 270A, (w.e.f. April 19, 2010).


Comparative Table of Article 270A of the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973
Constitution of Pakistan 1962 :
Constitution of Pakistan 1956 :
Constitution of India 1950:
Government of India Act 1935:

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Leading & Latest Cases on Article 270A of the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973:

P L D 1988 SC 416  BENAZIR BHUTTO  FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN AND ANOTHER
P L D 1989 SC 26
FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN AND ANOTHER
GHULAM MUSTAFA KHAR
P L D 1992 LAHORE 99  SAKINA BIBI  FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN
P L D 1993 LAHORE 218
SAEED AHMED AND OTHERS
 PROVINCE OF THE PUNJAB AND OTHERS
P L D 1993 LAHORE 875  AL-JEHAD TRUST AND ANOTHER
AL-JEHAD TRUST THROUGH REAEESUL MUJAHIDEEN HABIB-ULWAHAB-UL-KHAIRI
FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN AND 27 OTHERS
MAHMOOD KHAN ACHAKZAI AND OTHERS
FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN AND OTHERS
ENGR. IQBAL ZAFAR JHAGRA AND OTHERS
KHALILUR REHMAN AND 4 OTHERS

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