Yousaf Saleem: Pakistan’s first visually impaired judge


Yousaf Saleem, 25-year-old, a visually impaired lawyer, became on Tuesday the first blind judge in the history of Pakistan, after he took oath as a civil judge on Tuesday.
ISLAMABAD: A visually impaired young lawyer has become the first blind judge in Pakistani legal history. Yousaf Saleem was among 21 judges who took the oath to be sworn in as civil judges on June 26. The 25-year-old earned top marks in his law exams, conducted at the Lahore High Court (LHC), and received a gold medal from the University of Punjab in 2014.
The young advocate had filed a petition challenging a decision in April by LHC’s selection committee to turn him down for the post of civil judge, even though he had all the prerequisites for the post and was one of only 21 candidates out of 300 to pass the exam for the job.
After local media picked up the story, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar intervened and on May 21 this year, the young lawyer received a letter from the LHC confirming his appointment. Saleem thanked the CJP and added: “I hope and pray that my appointment as a civil judge will serve as an inspiration for all differently abled persons in Pakistan and they will always do their best to achieve their goals.” Saleem, the son of a chartered accountant, has four sisters, two of whom are also visually impaired.
They refused to let physical disability get in their way and have achieved success in various fields through commitment and hard work. “I always wanted to become a judge and thank God my dream is finally coming true,” Saleem added.