Justice Bhagwandas took oath with Quranic prayer
Islamabad, March 26 (NNN-PTI) Justice Rana Bhagwandas might be the first Hindu judge to take over as the Acting Chief Justice of the Pakistan Supreme Court, but took oath with a Quranic prayer as stipulated by a rule introduced by late military ruler Zia-ul Haq.
Justice Das, who is an expert in Islamic law, but has remained devout Hindu took the oath reciting "Bismillah, (in the name of Allah the most beneficent and most merciful", local daily 'The News' reported.
He took a similar oath when he became the judge of Sindh High Court and later Supreme Court.
The text of oath incorporating a Quranic prayer "may Allah Almighty help and guide me, A'meen) was introduced by Zia in the 1973 constitution through a special Presidential order in 1985 and has been in vogue ever since.
Justice Das's appointment has hit the headlines all over the world as the Hindu judge was made ACJ on his return from a pilgrimage from India by virtue of being the senior most judge of the apex court.
The government is also hopeful that the appointment of Justice Das who has the reputation of being the most honest and straightforward judge would help contain the massive protests that erupted following suspension and subsequent manhandling of Supreme Court Chief Justice, Iftikar M Chaudhry.
By virtue of becoming ACJ, Justice Das also heads the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) which conducted the trial against Chaudhry. The trial resumes on April 3.