Archive

Posts Tagged ‘iftikhar chaudhary’

Supreme Court of Pakistan’s remarkable decision can change the future course of our country.

August 2, 2009 2 comments

On Friday after a long delay of more than 4 hours SC of Pakistan gave a remarkable judgement of declaring the 3rd November 2007 as unconstitutional,illegal and extra judicial.

The 14 member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Ahmed Chaudhary who was restored by the government on 16 March 2009 after immense pressure from a long march by lawyers,civil society and politicians on Friday also rejected the unconstitutional amendments made by former dictator Musharraf during the time of emergency (between 3rd November 2007 and 15 December 2007).

SC sent the cases of those judges who violated the judgement of 7 member bench which declared 3rd November 2007 actions as unconstitutional and ordered the judiciary not to take oath under the PCO of dictator to Supreme judicial council.

Also the Supreme Court declared:

1) The sacking of judges by Musharraf on 3rd November as unconstitutional.

2) The removal of judges appointed during the PCO period and the Dogar period.

3) The tenure of Abdul Hameed Dogar (The PCO CJ appointed by Musharraf) as unconstitutional.

4) The increase in number of  SC judges to 29 through finance bill by current parliament as unconstitutional.

5) The Islamabad High Court as unconstitutional and now after this decision all the judges of  Islamabad HC are dismissed from their service.

6) The Ordinances issued by the dictator are referred to the parliament for review.

 

However in the decision SC did not change the status of :

1) The presidential oath taken by Dogar from Zardari.

2) The financial and administrative decisions taken by Dogar.

3) The cases related to day to day personal issues settled by the courts during that time.

One thing which didn’t go in favor of the government apart from the removal of jiala judges is the change in status of NRO which was approved by  the Dogar court is now a thing to be decided means people including or specially Zardari are now not indemnified from the cases of corruption.

The court has indeed played their part expected from them (people also expect more good news from them) and now the ball is in the court of the national parliament to show what they are capable of doing.

9 March,2009–>Join the Long March for the freedom and restoration of judiciary.

January 12, 2009 2 comments

Dear Readers,
During the early period of Islam a woman of the Makhzoom family with good connections was found guilty of theft. For the prestige of the Quraish, some prominent people including Asama Bin Zaid interceded to save her from punishment. The Prophet refused to condone the crime and expressed displeasure saying, “Many a community ruined itself in the past as they only punished the poor and ignored the offences of the exalted. By Allah, if Muhammad’s (my) daughter Fatima would have committed theft, her hand would have been severed.
The Qur’an says: “We sent aforetime our messengers with clear Signs and sent down with them the Book and the Balance, that men may stand forth in Justice.” (Al-Hadeed 57:25). It is not only for the holy messengers of God, but this commandment has been for the people in general too. Qur’an commands: “O ye who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to Piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do.” (Al-Maidah 5:8).
As I am writing this hundreds of people are being killed, wounded, hunted, tormented, ill-treated, delivered up to the most intolerable and hopeless anxiety and destroyed morally and mentally, and there is nothing in sight at present to arrest this spreading process and prevent it from reaching us. It is spreading fast! It is time for the Pakistanis in general and youth especially to act and try to be part of the struggle initiated by honorable Chief Justice of Paksitan Iftikhar Muhammad chaudhary for independent judicial system in Pakistan. One “NO” on march 09, 2007 started an unprecedented process of social transformation at a massive level in Pakistan.
As the result of that process nation got rid from a military dictator and a new government established in Pakistan on the promise of undoing the wrongs done by the military regime. The new government led by Mr. Asif Ali zardari broke all promises and the leader of lawyer community Mr. Ali ahmed kurd has to call for another long march on March 09, 2009.
Together, we the people of Pakistan has successfully outset many military and cicivilain dictators before and this time again if united for a “Just” paksitan we can write a new history. Let us make a resulotion that we will not sit in rest till we got things in order in our country. Let us make this country of Peace, love, harmony and beauty. Let us start this with the first step of independent Judiciary.
Let me assure you if we run away from the disorder prevailing in our country now, it will follow and get us. We have to face it. We have to solve it, or be destroyed by it. It is as urgent and comprehensive as that.
I invite you all to be a part of this long march with your maximum energies and support. I have developed this web site for you all to provide a platform to discuss and share ideas for a better understanding to make this “LONG MATRCH” a “FINAL MARCH”
Yours in struggle for a Just Pakistan
Muhammad Asif Riaz

for further details plz visit http://9march.search.org.pk

Another step towards the success for a noble cause–>Kurd Wins SCBA Elections

October 28, 2008 3 comments

Ali Ahmed Kurd, an active and one of the most enthusiastic leader of the lawyers and civil society movement for the restoration and indepemdence of judiciary in Pakistan has won the SCBA elections despite the government’s interference and rigging.

Ali Ahmed Kurd’s election as president and the defeat of PPP candidate is taken as a victory of CJP Iftikhar’s Camp over the camp of Zardari/Mush supporters.

Congratulations to Kurd and the supporters of the movement.

Keep up the good work.

 

Kurd elected as SCBA President (APP) PDF Print E-mail
ISLAMABAD, Oct 28 (APP): Ali Ahmed Kurd on Tuesday won election for the seat of President of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) held simultaneously in the four provincial capitals, besides Islamabad, Multan, Bahawalpur and Abbottabad.

According to unofficial results, Ali Ahmed Kurd secured 930 votes from Lahore, Peshawar, Islamabad, Karachi and Quetta while his rival M. Zafar got 419 votes.

Kurd secured 542 votes from Lahore, 62 from Peshawar, 144 from Islamabad, 138 from Karachi and 44 from Quetta. M. Zafar got 220, 37, 69, 75 and 18 votes from Lahore, Peshawar, Islambad, Karachi and Quetta respectively.

Results from Multan, Bahawalpur and Abbottabad are yet to be announced. A total of 1,724 registered members of Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) were to elect new office bearers of the lawyers’ body.

March for Justice and Freedom

The nation has been fighting for more than a year for the noble cause of restoration of judiciary, for the cause of justice and rule of law.

The movement which started with a ‘NO’ to the dictator by the honorable CJ of Pakistan Iftikhar Chaudhary has now seems to be in the crucial stages and I also hope that it’s in the final stages to the path of success.

Though the nation was fighting for the cause, giving lives and facing the brutality of government institutions some of our ‘leaders’ were busy in making deals outside the country, making decisions regarding the future of our country, taking dictations from imperialist powers on how to run the country and who should run the affairs of the state.

The movement would have achieved its goal immediately after the 18 Feb elections but it didn’t because the lust of power and greed of our elected representatives who on the foreign dictation are delaying the issue, it seems they don’t care what the people of Pakistan want, what is the need of time for the nation, where we have to take our future as a nation, what are our national objectives, how to safeguard the national integrity and honor, how to improve the lives of our people, how to get rid of the dictatorship and above all how to give confidence to the nation by respecting there mandate to restore the independent judiciary of 2nd November 2007 BUT they are busy in getting assurances from the Americans for the protection of their status as ‘rulers of Pakistan’(or in-fact loyal servants of the USA).

When ever there is a chance of restoration of judiciary we see Americans arriving in Islamabad to meet our so called democratic leadership and then we see hypocritical statements by Mr. Zardari

such as:”We want to change the system it’s not just about the restoration of few judges” or ”Murree declaration was just a political statement “…

Now he has said,”We are ready to face the lawyers’ movement”.

The reason why our American ‘masters’ don’t want their slaves to have an independent judiciary is that they  want to protect their best asset in the country (the dictator who served them more than he served his nation) and cannot afford to lose him before 2008 presidential elections in USA because if CJP Iftikhar gets restored then it means a farewell to Musharraf and his anti-Pakistan policies and it will be serious set back for the Republican party in the elections who are banking on Musharraf to give them a breakthrough in our mountains and so they again will be able to use the same old fake war against terrorism in their elections.

Americans are very clever they always have a backup plan and that plan is now evident in the shape of PPP lead by Zardari and well assisted by people like Rehman Malik,Hussain Haqqani and the same old Mehmood Ali Durrani (former Pakistani ambassador and currently working as national security advisor to the PM) under the influence of NRO and under the umbrella of Dogar Lead judiciary .

Now we have to be really alert in this situation we not only have to protect our judiciary but also to safeguard our freedom, we have to cry out loud that we reject any foreign interference in our national affairs, we don’t accept any involvement of USA in our judicial issue, we are a nuclear power and a free country we know how to take it on the path of success.

I appeal to the whole nation to think as sincere Pakistanis and join the long from Multan to Islamabad for the cause of Justice and Freedom.

LONG LIVE PAKISTAN!

GO MUSHARRAF GO!

 

Lawyers announce the date for long march(10 june)–>APDM to meet on 18 May

In All Pakistan lawyers convention, Pakistan bar council (PBC) has announced the date of long March for the restoration of judiciary .

The date decided with the mutual consensus is 10 th of June 2008 and according to SCBA president Aitzaz Ahsan the Chief Guest for the March will be the honorable genuine CJP Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhary.

Lawyers have formed a committee to decide the future coarse of the movement.

APDM to Meet on 18 May

APDM will hold a meeting on 18 May in Islamabad to decide the future line of action for the movement to restore judiciary in Pakistan.

according to a report by The News:

“Experts from all segments of the society would be invited to the conference. They would take into account the current situation and express their views to chalk out the future line of action,” sources in APDM told The News here on Friday.

The sources further said the committee, which included Liaquat Baloch, Akram Shah,

Dr Hameed Memon and Sardar Zaheer, would hold a session to decide a date for the conference, prepare the draft of invitation and alsofinalise the names of those

who were to be invited to the forum.

The final countdown—>Legal Eye by Babar Sattar on Emergency mailing list

The final countdown
Legal eye
 
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Babar Sattar
 
The writer is a lawyer based in Islamabad. He is a Rhodes scholar and has an LL.M from Harvard Law School
 
Asif Zardari asserts that judges cannot be restored through an executive order for (a) the Dogar Court can stay such order thus creating a constitutional
crisis and (b) removing the midnight appointees of General Musharraf through an executive order would be wrong, just like removing the constitutional judges
was wrong, and that two wrongs don’t make a right. The arguments don’t really wash. It has been asserted in this space before that if a stay order issued
by the existing court is a real deterrent, then this entire debate is redundant. For the Dogar Court has already validated all the Nov 3 actions of the
general, including that of dismissing judges. Second, the rationale for restoring the Nov 2 judges is that the tenure of constitutionally appointed judges
is protected and they can only be removed pursuant to Article 209 proceedings, on the advice of the Supreme Judicial Council.
 
The deposed judges have been unlawfully restrained from performing duty as the mandatory removal process was not followed in ousting them. Thus they are
still judges and can be allowed to resume duty with an executive order acknowledging the same. The Article 209 protection doesn’t apply to the general’s
post-Nov 3 appointees, because they are not constitutionally appointed judges. The PPP, under the leadership of Mr Zardari, has refused to abide by this
majority opinion of the legal fraternity. Is it a coincident that the PPP has chosen to follow a minority and largely discredited legal opinion on the
proper mode of restoring judges pandered by the likes of Sharifuddin Pirzada and Hafiz Pirzada who are responsible in large part for our convoluted constitutional
jurisprudence? According to this opinion the general’s unconstitutional actions cannot be undone without a constitutional amendment or else we will set
a legal precedent that will have horrendous consequences for the nation.
 
What consequences are we talking about? If Hafiz Pirzada’s advice is adhered to, the precedent we are setting is that any unlawful changes made to the
constitution by a dictator by use of force will automatically attract the protection of the constitution, and can only be undone by meeting the high threshold
set to amend the constitution. The idea that if judges are restored through an executive order, the executive will in future be able to do all sorts of
crazy things through executive orders is simply preposterous. The executive order will simply be reiterating the twin constitutional principles that that
under no circumstance can (i) the constitution be amended without a two-thirds parliamentary majority required by Article 239 of the constitution, and
(ii) constitutionally-appointed judges be removed without following the process mandated by Article 209.
 
It is hard to believe that despite being counseled by Fakharudin G Ebrahim, Aitzaz Ahsan, Raza Rabbani and the legal opinion of sixteen judges including
almost all former chief justices, the PPP is still genuinely confused about the legal issues underlying this debate. Why then is this popular national
party jeopardizing its mandate by flip-flopping on the judges’ issue? A few explanations come to mind.
 
First, the negotiations between General Musharraf and Benazir Bhutto came to fruition in Dubai in the backdrop where the general was feeling the heat due
to the lawyers’ movement and wanted some respite. It is possible that some explicit promises with regard to the PPP supporting the general against Chief
Justice Iftikhar Chaudhary were made part of this deal. As this deal was brokered by the general’s western allies and supported by the UAE rulers — and
Mr Zardari duly credited the US for getting the general to shun his uniform on BB’s insistence — PPP’s current leadership might be convinced that reneging
on a promise made to the US and PPP’s other foreign sponsors will carry more political cost than backtracking on a popular domestic issue and breaking
a promise made to the people of Pakistan.
 
Second, there is a structural change underway in the composition of the establishment at the moment. Traditionally, the judiciary as an institution was
part of the establishment, and the PML-N and its successor political forces comprised the establishment’s B-team. And the PPP might have a point when it
complains that the judiciary has in the past applied the constitution more enthusiastically when the outcome favoured the PML-N as opposed to the PPP.
After March 9, 2007, however, the judiciary reluctantly decided to confront the egregiousness of the establishment and their divorce was finalized on Nov
3, 2007. Simultaneously, having learnt lessons from its time in exile and from suffering persecution at the hands of the Musharraf regime since Oct 12,
1999, the PML-N has also emerged as an anti-establishment party for the first time since its inception.
 
These two happenings have created a vacuum that the establishment wishes to fill by (i) resurrecting a court (that includes its post-Nov 3 midnight appointees)
committed to the status-quo, and (ii) co-opting a ‘reconciliation-seeking’ PPP that can function as the political ally of the establishment and will be
allowed to rule in return within the four corners of policy areas delegated to political governments during democratic times. This is certainly not another
grand conspiracy theory. We can replace the word ‘establishment’ with the term ‘status-quo forces’. The point being made is that the polity is undergoing
a structural transformation and the traditional actors that functioned as agents of status quo have opted to become forces of change.
 
Consequently it is extremely tempting for the PPP — which has ruled for a maximum of five years over the last three decades despite being the largest
political party of the country — to fill the pro-status quo slots that have opened up due to the coup of the judiciary and the PML-N, in return for being
treated as the favoured political entity by the establishment and overtly supported by the Dogar Court. The fact that the current PPP leadership is dominated
by individuals who have no popular roots in the masses and don’t seem beholden to Bhuttoism or the ideology of ‘roti, kapra aur makan’ — which by definition
is pro-people and anti-establishment — exacerbates the danger of the PPP chewing on this bate. Would it not be a grave tragedy if the predominant lessons
that the PPP has learnt in its 40-year existence turns out to be that (i) the desires of the US administration must trump wishes of Pakistani people when
the two are in conflict, and (ii) not getting on the wrong side of the establishment even at the cost of compromising principles makes for better politics?
 
The judges’ issue is one that has stirred the collective conscience of our nation like none other in recent history. What is at stake foremost is whether
we as a nation will side with rule of law or politics of expediency. The return of judges will not function as elixir for all the maladies afflicting Pakistan.
But if we squander this opportunity it will take at least a decade to raise another breed of judges who might muster the courage to stand and fight to
liberate the judiciary from the crutches of the establishment.
 
Second, many of Pakistan’s problems spring from the imbalance in the distribution of state authority between civil and military institutions. This is a
time in our history when the military needs to demonstrate its neutrality toward politics due to political compulsions and to protect its own institutional
interests. If our political elites fail to regain some of the lost ground in these circumstances, we might have to suffer another reckless dictator to
create overwhelming public support for such change.
 
And third, the restoration of judges brought about by dint of a freedom movement supported by the nation will be tremendously emancipating psychologically.
For too long have we given too much credit (or discredit) to the ‘forces that be’ for controlling our fate. But returning our judges against the wishes
of the establishment and its foreign patrons, we could prove to ourselves that we are not puppets but a sovereign people who have control over our present
and our future.
 
The issue of restoration isn’t merely a political dispute but one of individual and collective choices that is defining the personal identity and moral
standing of the actors involved. The lawyers’ movement has been advocating that the promise and practice of law must be brought into closer alignment and
this modest goal resonates will many around the country. The judges should be restored and can be restored but not without a forceful street movement that
forces our ruling political elite to acknowledge that people are not willing to allow the country to recede into another round of musical chairs between
conviction-less politicians and generals.
 
And to achieve that the lawyers must boycott all courts – not just higher courts — for at least a few weeks to bring the judicial system to a grinding
halt. It is time to move from the go-slow phase to the pens-down phase at this decisive stage of this historic movement. Without this and a forceful street
movement the deposed judges might be history.
 

All rise!–>by Yousuf Nasim on Dawn Blog

reporters following a comprehensive discussion regarding rising inflation, rule of law and political instability in the country.

Achakzai told reporters that the alliance had agreed to form a committee to work out a procedure by which apex and high court judges who were deposed by President Musharraf on November 3, 2007, might be reinstated. He argued that since Musharraf had openly admitted that his actions had been extra-constitutional there could be no legal justification for stalling the restoration any further.

Imran Khan continued by saying that the delay was nothing more than an attempt to protect the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) from being struck down, thus resurrecting criminal cases against government leaders such as Asif Zardari.

The APDM decided to address the ‘judges’ issue following the resignation of the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N), a member of the ruling coalition, from the cabinet. PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif chose to take the drastic step after failing to secure a solution to the problem during negotiations with the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) who hold a majority of seats in the National Assembly. The resignation of key figures such as Minister of Finance Ishaq Dar has created problems for the new government, which is still struggling to cement its position and quell public concern over food inflation and the deteriorating law and order situation.

Aitzaz vows to continue struggle —>The Nation

A reminder to the nation!

As it is now cleared that US and Musharraf have succeeded in cashing the greed

Mr. 10% Zardari and now he is playing the role of assisting mush in his efforts to

serve their common master George Bush and his administration in destroying the

country.

The civil society,lawyers,students,media related persons and political workers who

love there country must show solidarity in backing the free judiciary under the genuine

and de-jure CJP Iftikhar Chaudhary.

Go Musharraf Go!

Go Dictatorship Go!

Go American Pets Go!

Go Corrupt 10% Go!

Aitzaz vows to continue struggle
MUNAWAR ALAM
KARACHI – The deadline for the reinstatement of deposed judges ended on Wednesday (April 30, 2008) and lawyers’ fraternity is waiting for the decision of political parities to be announced after the ongoing talks between the top leadership of PML-N and the PPP in Dubai.
Addressing a ceremony held in connection with the memory of renowned poet Habib Jalib at Karachi Press Club on Wednesday, Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan said that lawyers are ready to continue their struggle in case the judges are not reinstated.
He paid a glowing tribute to Habib Jalib and said that the late revolutionary poet never surrendered to the military dictators. Habib Jalib Yadgar Committee and the Karachi Press Club had jointly organised the ceremony.
Aitzaz Ahsan further said in the history of Pakistan judiciary, from Maulvi Tameezuddin case to Zafar Ali Shah, has always surrendered to the whims of the military rulers but during the last two and a half year the nation witnessed a popular revolution in this discipline when deposed CJP refused to take dictation from the present dictatorship.
He said that Pervez Musharraf had illegally and unconstitutionally suspended CJP Ifitkhar on March 9 2007 and November 3 2007.
He said that the refusal of CJP Iftikhar Chaudhry had opened new vistas for the legal fraternity to realise the dream of a free and independent judiciary in the country.
“Democracy and Parliament can not be strengthened without the freedom of judiciary. It was for the first time in the history of the world that 43 honourable judges were kept in prison under the orders of a military dictator and against that act lawyers had filed a FIR against Pervez Musharraf”, Aitzaz added.
Speaking on the occasion, Justice (R) Rana Bhagwandas said that Pakistani rulers have attacked the judiciary umpteen times during the last 60 years. He saluted the ongoing lawyers’ movement for the reinstatement saying their valuable and heroic struggle would serve as a beacon of light for the people of Pakistan.
“Some people object that we had taken oath under PCO but our intention at that time was to protect the constitution. After taking oath under PCO we always work according to the law and constitution and never made any decision contradictory to the constitution. People respect the deposed judges because they refused to prostrate before the dictator”, Bhagwandas added.
He demanded the people to raise their voice for justice and participate in the ongoing movement of lawyers for the freedom of judiciary.
Earlier, Justice Rana Bhagwandas gave away 15th Habib Jalib Award to Baristter Aitzaz Ahsan.
President Karachi Press Club Najeeb Ahmed, President Karachi Bar Association Mehmoodul Hassan, Abdul Hameed Chapra and Akhtar Hussain Advocate also addressed the ceremony.

Updates of black flag week—-> Rally on Sunday in Karachi

March 14, 2008 1 comment

Some updates for black flag week-rally in Karachi on Sunday

Updated Events at : http://blackflagweek.blogspot.com/
———————————————————————————————————————
KARACHI CAR RALLY
3:00pm
KHI: FOUR RALLIES: Car.Truck.Bus.Rickshaw Rallies
When Sun, Mar 16, 3pm – 5pm

All 4 rallies end at Quaid’s Mazar.

Starting at these 4 points:

1. Bacha Khan Chowk,
2. Malir District Courts,
3. Bacha Khan Chowk,
4. Seaview.

Bring your car
Bring your motorcycle
Bring your rickshaw
Bring your bus Or
Bring your truck

Wear Black Armband
Fly a Black Flag on your vehicle

EVENTS FOR FRIDAY:
——————————————————————————————————————
Karachi

4:00pm
KHI: Flag Hoisting: Seaview
When Fri, Mar 14, 4pm – 5pm
Where Seaview
Description People’s Resistance

5:00pm
KHI: Seminar & Flag Hoisting
When Fri, Mar 14, 5pm – 7pm
Where Jinnah Medical College (Medicare)

——————————————————————————————————————
Lahore

10:30am
LHR: G. House Meeting
When Fri, Mar 14, 10:30am – 11:30am
Where Lahore High Court & Lahore Bar Association

5:00pm
LHR: Black Flag Rally
When Fri, Mar 14, 5pm – 6pm
Where Lahore liberty Roundabout

——————————————————————————————————————
Islamabad:

4:00pm
ISB: Black Flag Demo at G-10 Markaz
When Fri, Mar 14, 4pm – 6pm
Where G-10 Markaz, Isl.

WhenFri, Mar 14, 4pm – 6pm
WhereG-10 Markaz, Isl.

JAB KHATM HOGI ULTI GINTI–>Woh ajab aik manzar hoga

March 12, 2008 6 comments

LAWYERS HAVE GIVEN A TIMELINE OF 30 DAYS AFTER THE FIRST SESSION OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

TO REINSTATE THE JUDICIARY.

THE POEM IS A MESSAGE FOR THE DICTATOR AND HIS SUPPORTERS.

WOH AJAB AIK MANZAR HOGA

AAMIR GHAR KAI ANDAR HOGA

BAHIR SAARI JANTA HOGI

LOGON KA SAMANDAR HOGA

KALAI KALAI KOTON WALAI

SABZ HILALI PARCHAM THAMAI

DIL MEIN AIK UMANG LIAI

MANZIL KI TARANG LIAY

DHARNA DAIKAI BETHAI HONGAI

WOH AJAB AIK MANZAR HOGA

SAATH HONGAI MAZDOOR BHI

TALBA BHI ASATZA BHI

INSAF KA ALAM THAMAI

ADAL KAI LAGAINGAI NAARAI

PHIR ADLIA AZAD HOGI

AUR AAMIR NAZARBAND HOGA

WOH AJAB AIK MANZAR HOGA

ZULM KI JO DAASTAN HAI

HAR SHAKS KI ZABAN PAR HOGI

JIN HATHON NAI LAHU BAHAIA

QAUM KI MAON KO RULAIA

ISS DIN WOH KAPKAPAIN GAI

JAB KHATM HOGI ULTI GINTI

SAARAI DARWAZAI BAND HONGAI

WOH AJAB AIK MANZAR HOGA

AAMIR GHAR KAI ANDAR HOGA

BAHIR SARI JANTA HOGI

LOGON KA SAMANDAR HOGA

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 43 other followers