Chaudhry's reinstatement was seen as a positive step for democratic rule in Pakistan. Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani [BBC profile] announced early Monday that the government would reinstate Chaudhry in response to recent protests by members of the lawyers' movement and opposition politicians and supporters. Gilani also ordered government officials to release [Dawn report] anyone arrested during the past week's so-called "long march" [JURIST reports]. Reports first surfaced late Sunday that President Zardari had agreed to reinstate Chaudhry and other judges ousted by Zardari's predecessor Musharraf in November 2007 after his declaration of emergency rule. Sharif and the PML-N have actively campaigned [JURIST report] for Chaudhry's reinstatement, leading a similar "long march" last summer. Chaudhry has always maintained that he is still chief justice [JURIST report] under the Pakistani constitution [text].
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