ISLAMABAD: Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali, a Supreme Court Judge, on Monday urged for collective efforts to create awareness and educate the masses about the environment and its importance.
He expressed these views in the inaugural ceremony of one week training course on “Intellectual Property Rights Laws, Environmental Laws with Special Reference to Jurisdiction and Powers of Green Courts and other new laws” for District and Sessions Judges/ Additional District and Sessions Judges from all over Pakistan including Azad Jammu and Kashmir here at Federal Judicial Academy FJA.
About the importance of the environmental laws, he said this subject was, indeed, very important, adding that it was the need of the hour. He said realizing its importance the FJA had done a good job to incorporate it in the training course.
This subject, he said, started from the destruction of ozone layer and ended up to our house when we throw the house waste and garbage on the streets. He said it was a subject of human interest litigation. He said District Judiciary Judges should make sure that environmental laws were enforced.
He said mere labelling of the environmental courts as Environmental Tribunal or Green Courts was not enough but more important was the conduct of the Presiding Officer, how active role he/she was playing in saving the environment, in this age of environmental decay.
Lamenting about the environmental laws and environmental tribunals in the country, he said the laws enacted in the country, decade or more than a decade, unfortunately our environmental tribunals are only “on the record” working. This is, indeed, a sorry state of affairs about the environmental tribunal or green courts in the country.
Regarding the environmental laws, he said nowadays seminars, workshops and walks are being organized but people need more and more education and awareness about this subject, especially, those people who have no proper exposure about this subject.
He also enumerated the efforts of the emerging south Asian robust economies such as China, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan etc. where the Environmental Courts / Green courts are actively working. He referred to the last year’s South Asian Conference on Environmental Justice and the Bhurban Declaration, 2012, saying that still more was required in this domain.
About the much more debated Intellectual Property Rights Laws in the world today, he said these laws are also need of the day to curb the menace of piracy but what it needs a very balanced approach.
“Intellectual Property Rights Laws are not made to exploit the poor of the developing and third world countries like Pakistan and protect and advance the interests of the companies from the developed economies”. He said the judges at district judiciary level have to adopt a balanced and pragmatic approach to tackle the issues arising out of it.
Earlier, FJA Director General presented his welcome speech and highlighted the objectives of the training course. Spokesman of the Academy Hashim Abro said that twenty one District Judiciary Judges including District and Sessions Judges and Additional Sessions Judges were undergoing this one week training at the Academy.