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P L D 1964 LAHORE 23

MUBIN-UL-HAQ SIDDIQI

V/S

MUHAMMAD IQBAL AND OTHERS

Per Ortcheson, J

(a) Constitution of Pakistan (1962) Art. 111(1)
Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Art. 66

Article 111(1) of the Constitution lays down that the validity of any proceedings in an Assembly shall not be questioned in any Court. A comparison of this Article with Article 89 of the Constitution of 1956 further reveals that the two provisions are in effect identical, the only difference being that Article 111 of the present Constitution has introduced a new clause (clause (5) to shall, except with the leave of the Speaker of the Assembly, be served or executed within the precincts of the place where a meeting of an Assembly is being held. The clause is, however, totally irrelevant to the present case. [p 28]A

(b) Constitution of Pakistan (1962) Art 98
Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Art 199

The learned Advocate-General for the respondents advanced the proposition that this Court does not even possess the jurisdiction to go into the question whether any particular events taking place in the Assembly fall within the ambit of the word “proceedings” as used in Article 111 of the Constitution. Not only is this argument on the face of it untenable, but it stands disposed of by the same decision of the Supreme Court. [p. 30]B

(c) Constitution of Pakistan (1962) Art. 111
Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Art. 66

In the present case I have no hesitation in answering the question posed above in the affirmative. Assuming for the sake of argument that any irregularity of procedure was committed, even an irregular proceeding is still a proceeding with the meaning of Article 111 of the Constitution.

(d) Constitution of Pakistan (1962) Art. 63
Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Art. 189

Mr. Mahmood Ali has, however, failed to show that the provisions of the Constitution of India are identical with the Constitution of Pakistan in this matter, quite apart from the fact that this Court is bound by the decisions of the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

(e) Constitution of Pakistan (1962) Art 110
Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Art 55

The other aspect is that there is also prima facie much substance in the assertion of the respondents that the petitioner, having himself disregarded the established conventions and the Rules of Procedure, has not come into Court with clean hands. Attention has been drawn above to rule rule 10(4) of the Rules of Procedure which requires that if there is an item relating to the removal of the Speaker or a Deputy Speaker in the agenda of a sitting, the sitting shall not be adjourned until the resolution has been disposed of. It can thus be argued with a considerable show of reason that the action of the petitioner in adjourning the sitting instead of suspending it–the only other alternative open to him under Article 110(2) of the Constitution –was illegal. Mr. Mahmood Ali strenuously urged that clause (1) (a) of Article 110, which lays down the the procedure of an Assembly shall be reflated by Rules of procedure made by the Assembly, is subject to clause (2) but I am unable to agree in the sense in which Mr. Mahmood Ali understands the matter. The clear meaning of the Article taken as a whole appears to me to be that while clause (1)(a) requires that the whole procedure of the Assembly shall be regulated by rules, clause (2) imposes the limitation that no rule shall be framed providing for a quorum of less than forty Members. Subject to this limitation, however, it is within the power of the Assembly to pass a rule or rules laying down in what circumstance a meeting consisting of less than forty Members shall be adjourned and in what circumstances it may be suspended. [p. 31] E

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