Makhdoom Ali Khan

Makhdoom Ali Khan

Makhdoom Ali Khan

Makhdoom Ali Khan is a practising Senior-Advocate of Pakistan Supreme Court. He previously served as Pakistan’s Attorney General, member of Law & Justice Commission of Pakistan, board member of Pakistan’s Federal Judicial Academy, board member of Sindh’s Judicial Academy, and chairperson of Pakistan bar Council.

He is serving as a Member of Governing Board of British-Pakistan Law Council, an officer of Board of FICACIC (Forum for International Conciliation & Arbitration, a member of Advisory Board of CPLC (Citizens Police Liaison Committee), a member of ICSID-International Center for Settlement of Investment Dispute’s chairman’s Panel of the Arbitrators. This article has every information about him, including Makhdoom Ali Khan Biography.

Name:Makhdoom Ali Khan
In Urdu :مخدوم علی خان
Native Name :Makhdoom Ali
Famous As:Lawyer
Residence:Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
Education:(MA in International Relations) & (LL.B) & (BA in Law) & (LLM)
Alma mater :University of Karachi & S. M. Law College & London School of Economics
Role:Attorney General of Pakistan
Dates:September 2001 – August 2007
Preceded by :Aziz A. Munshi
Succeeded by :Malik Mohammad Qayyum
Role:Chairman of Pakistan Bar Council
Preceded by :Aziz A. Munshi
Succeeded by :Malik Mohammad Qayyum
Role:Member chairman’s Panel of Arbitrators
Assumed office:2011
Role:Member London Court of International Arbitration
Assumed office:2008–2013
Date:9 January 1954
Place:Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan

Makhdoom Ali Khan Biography

Makhdoom Ali Khan Biography

Ali Khan is a senior-most and competent advocate who has marked his name in the judiciary after completing his education. First, he served as a lecturer at the University of Keele. He celebrated his name in his profession at a notably younger age.

That is evident because all top Pakistani litigators are senior to him and he was an Advocate of Pakistan Supreme Court in 1989 at the age of thirty-five. Chambers Global 2010 ranked him as Pakistan’s best litigator under their ‘Lawyer-Rankings for the Dispute Resolution’ ranking Khan alone in the Band Number 1.

The rankings declared him Pakistan’s one of the finest report interviewees, courtroom performers, no one is better than him. He does not need magic as he would predict any question that his opponent advocate could ask in any manner. He is an absolute expert of the preparation.

Makhdoom Ali Khan has a blend of constitutional and commercial litigation and enjoys an especially powerful international arbitration-sphere standing. The Chambers Asia Pacific 2013 ranked him as Pakistan’s best litigator and extraordinarily talented and intelligent. He argues brilliantly in the court and comes with a game-plan and executes it efficiently.

Makhdoom Date of Birth

He opened his eyes on 9th January 1954 in Karachi, Pakistan.

Education of Makhdoom

He secured a Masters degree in International Relations from Karachi University and did law from S.M. Law College in Karachi. He got enrolled at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge and did B.A. in Law in 1977 and then attended London School of Economics to complete LLM and a degree in Political Science.

In 1979 he was called to bar at Lincoln’s Inn where he topped in Law of International Trade and Constitutional Law.


Joined Office of Syed Shareef-ud-Din

After briefly teaching the Constitutional Law & Public International Law at the University of Keele in the U.K, he returned to Pakistan and joined Syed Shareef-ud-Din and the current Ambassador and former Attorney-General of Pakistan and stayed there for 2-years.

Joined Chamber of his Father

He joined the chamber of his father Fazale Ghani (Retired Justice of West Pakistan’s High Court and a Baluchistan Law Reform Commission). He practised law there until he got designated as Pakistan’s Attorney General in Sep 201 making him 2nd youngest Attorney-General in Pakistani history.

Invitation by Pakistan Supreme Court

Pakistan Supreme Court invited him to sign the roll of the Senior Advocates of Pakistan Supreme Court in 2001 and made him 2nd youngest advocate to do so in Pakistani history.

Authored Columns and Reports

During his initial stay at Fazal-e-Ghani Khan & Co. Advocates Khan wrote the columns for Newsline, Herald, and Dawn and also travelled to and wrote reports on Malaysia’s judicial independence Myanmar for ICJ (International Commission of Jurists) along with addressing at several International Law-Seminars.

Made his mark in Professional Career

He marked his name in his profession at a notably younger age. That is evident because all top Pakistani litigators are senior to him and he was an Advocate of Pakistan Supreme Court in 1989 at the age of thirty-five. In 1989 he was given an honour usually conferred upon senior-most litigators in Pakistan to perform as ‘Amicus Curiae.’

Appeared Against Dismissal of Assembly

He appeared for Nawab Akbar when Baluchistan Provincial Assembly was dismissed, and he became 1st lawyer in Pakistan to secure and argue the restoration of dismissed assembly. Khan later appeared for then-President Farouq Leghari and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan in Supreme Court in dismissal cases.

He claimed the constitutional petition against Pakistani Government in 1999 on behest of Jang Group before Pakistan Supreme Court.

Performance as Attorney General

During his tenure as Attorney General Khan represented Pakistani Government with Johny Veeder QC, Christopher Greenwood QC and Jan Paulsson, Impregilo and Bayinder cases before International Center for Settlement of Investment Dispute’s arbitral tribunals.

President Parvaiz Musharraf also issued a directive that no Ministry or Government department could sign any Bilateral Investment-Treaty before consulting with Mr Makhdoom.

As an Advocate of the UNCITRAL Model

He also advocated adopting the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model-Law. He wrote Recognition & Enforcement Ordinance 2005 that incorporated New York Convention in Pakistan’s municipal laws and Arbitration Ordinance 2007 to enforce International Convention on Settlement of Disputes regarding Investment between States & Nationals of the other States.

Argued many Important Cases

He represented Pakistani Government as Attorney General to overturn a petition the Supreme Court judgment declared bank interest as Non-Islamic. Makhdoom Ali also argued before Pakistan Supreme Court that it is permissible for an adult woman to get married without her Wali’s consent, argued before the court as amicus curiae to restrict Government from constructions in Margalla Hills and Murree that were a hazard to our environment.

Ali Khan advised Musharraf to advise the Supreme Court when religious parties’ authority tries to set-up a Hasba Bill (Moral Police) in NWFP (North-West Frontier Province).

Represented and Advised Pakistan in Important Cases

He represented Government of Pakistan in several commercial and tax cases. He advised Pakistan on international arbitration and public International-law affairs that included a disputed issue with India’s neighbour country on building Baghliar Dam and Kishen Ganga Water dispute.

Makhdoom Ali Khan advised the Pakistani Government in Mukhtaran Mai case. He later went to Supreme Court of Pakistan to argue in Mukhtaran’s support that resulted in Supreme Court issuing orders for detention of accused rapists.

Head of Pakistani Delegation

He also served as head of Pakistani delegation to U.N. General Assembly in 2004 and plan was Control Measures to Finish the International Terrorism. He served as part of a 3-member Constitution Committee that drafted the current PCB constitution (Pakistan Cricket Board).

Part of Author’s Team

He was also part of the Women’s Protection Bill and Javaid Ahmed Ghamidi, Haziqul Khairi, and Mohammad Khalid Masood. This bill was passed with Parvez Musharraf and MQM and PPP (Pakistan People’s Party) in National Assembly.

Though PLM-Q initially opposed it and generated many hurdles to prevent it from becoming a law they later supported it when some provisions of this bill were modified to satisfy few conservative religious scholars who were completely against this bill.

It led to Ghamidi’s resignation from Islamic Ideology Council in Sep 2006 though the president didn’t accept it. It is reported that he, along with Haziqul Khairi, personally drafted this bill.

Recommendations for Recruitment of Advocates

His tenure as Attorney General saw some exceptionally successful and competent advocates recruited in Lahore High Court and Sindh High Court bench that was a deviation from past norms. Musharraf sacked all those lawyers appointed to Supreme and High Courts on his recommendations when he imposed emergency on 3rd November 2007.

Resignation from Attorney General’s Post 

He resigned from the post of Attorney General on 20th July 2007. He stated the reason for this resignation as his legal advice was continuously ignored and declared that reference was a complete failure for the Pakistani Government.

It was so disappointing that concerned authorities blamed each other instead of accepting the responsibility, making him 3rd longest-serving Attorney General in Pakistani history. In The News and Jang newspapers that president wasn’t getting his resignation but finally received it when Khan remained firm on his decision.

Rejoined Fazale Ghani Advocates

After resigning, he rejoined Fazale Ghani Advocates where he practised commercial arbitration and litigation, banking/company and constitutional litigation, taxation, and few appellate criminal-litigations.

Recognition as a Specialist in Law Matters

He is recognized as a specialist in international and constitutional law matters, taxation, corporate commercial arbitration and litigation. Makhdoom Ali refused to advise the Pakistani Government in legal-political affairs and refused to appear for president in petitions challenging his office appointment.

He continued to be engaged by government departments in arbitration and commercial cases.

Authored Authoritative Commentary

He has penned down authoritative commentary on Pakistan’s Constitution found in Pakistani chambers and law offices, [Islami Republic of Pakistan’s Constitution 1973, with political parties’ rule 1986, political parties act 1962, ECP notification for the registration of political parties 1986, Pakistan Law House 1988)].

Jang Group and Dawn printed stories stating that Khan drafted PCO (Provincial Constitutional Order) after imposing emergency in-country. However, his close sources denied this and both newspapers corrected the news after investigation and issued an apology on 15th November 2007 declaring him Pakistan’s most respected barrister.

Involvement in Commercial Cases

He appeared in several significant commercial cases after returning to private practice including Pakistan Petroleum Ltd, Jang Group, PTCL, Pakistan International Airlines, Petronas, BHP Billiton, OMV, Reckitt Benckiser, McDonald’s, Unilever, Citibank, Occidental Petroleum, Oil & Gas Development Company Ltd.

A few more cases include Oil & Gas Regulatory Authority, Habib Bank Ltd, Royal Palm Golf and Country Club, IGI Insurance, Government of Sindh, Huawei Technologies, General Electric, Engro Fertilizers, Ericsson Pakistan, Honda Atlas Motors, Geo TV, Telenor, Mobilink, Pakistan’s Commission of Securities & Exchange, Hub Power Company Ltd, Attock Oil & Pak Oil Fields, Roche Pak Ltd among other clients in Lahore High Court, Islamabad High Court, Pakistan Supreme Court, and Sindh High Court.

As an Arbitrator

He also sits as an arbitrator in several important affairs both in Pakistan and on an international level. He mostly practices at Sindh High Court and appears for his clients in Pakistan Supreme Court and Islamabad High Court. Offices of his firm Fazale Ghani Associates are situated in both Islamabad and Karachi.

Joined International Team

In 2018 he served as part of the International team made by Ministry of the Religious Affairs, to challenge the arbitral-award against it in Commercial Court of High Court of the Justice, Queen’s Bench-Division U.K. The decision was made in their favour with seventy million dollars damages awarded to the Religious Affairs Ministry.

Argued in Cases Related to Recruitment of Judges

He had also appeared in significant cases including recruitment of judges to Pakistan Supreme Court and High Courts since 2011. His stance remains the same in all matters.

He argued on an issue that Judicial Commission’s role in determining the contestant’s fitness and legal ability being elected to Supreme Court or High Court as a judge not open to appeal or review by other constitutional bodies, functionary, or forum.

Official Posts

  1. 2001 to 2007-Attorney General of Pakistan
  2. 2001 to 2007-Chairperson of PBC (Pakistan Bar Council)
  3. 2011 to Present-Member of Chairperson’s Panel of the Arbitrators
  4. 2001 to 2007-Member of Pakistan’s Law & Justice Commission
  5. 2001 to 2007-Board Member of Pakistan’s Federal Judicial Academy
  6. 2008 to 2013- Member of London Court of International Arbitration

Official Positions Declined by Khan

  1. 1996 and 1997-Judge of Sindh High Court
  2. 1999-Judge of Pakistan Supreme Court
  3. 2000-Advocate of General Sindh
  4. 2007-Judge of Pakistan Supreme Court
  5. 2007-Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs

Contact Information

Phone No: 021-5879511 / 5879513 /5879512/ 5879519

Fax: 021-5879521

Address: F-72/1, Block-8, Clifton, Karachi 75600, Sindh, Pakistan