Pakistan’s ex-Chief Justice takes oath as caretaker PM

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Islamabad, June 1 (IANS) Former Chief Justice Nasirul Mulk took oath as Pakistan’s caretaker Prime Minister on Friday, hours after the National Assembly was formally dissolved in the lead up to the July 25 elections.

President Mamnoon Hussain administered the oath to 67-year-old Mulk, who was unanimously nominated for the post by both the government and the opposition, with former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi describing the retired judge as a someone whose appointment “no one would object to”, Dawn newspaper reported.

Top government officials and dignitaries attended the ceremony, including Abbasi, the chiefs of staff, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani and others.

Following the ceremony, Mulk received a guard of honour at the PM House. Speaking to the media, the interim Premier said holding of transparent elections is his top and foremost priority. “Mark my words, general polls will be held timely.”

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He further said that he would undertake his responsibilities diligently and have a small cabinet.

The incumbent government completed its tenure on May 31 and the caretaker government will remain in office until a new government is elected. The caretaker administration will not take any major decisions.

The oath-taking ceremony came hours after the third National Assembly in a row managed to complete its five-year constitutional term. It was only the second National Assembly to do so under civilian rule, with the 2002 assembly operating and disbanding under former military dictator General Pervez Musharraf.

The three National Assemblies elec­ted seven Prime Ministers over the last 16 years, according to the report.

Mulk is one of the seven judges who signed a restraining order on November 3, 2007, when Musharraf imposed emergency and forcibly sent the judges home.

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He was born on August 17, 1950 in Mingora, Swat, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. He worked as a lawyer and judge for several years before his appointment as the 22nd Chief Justice of Pakistan in 2014.

Mulk is also remembered for the way he conducted a contempt case against former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

He has held the office of the chairman of the enrolment committee of the Pakistan Bar Council as well as the chairman of the building committee of the under-construction Supreme Court Bar Association complex.



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