LAHORE - The Lahore High Court on Thursday suspended two notifications of Punjab government under which Lahore Development Authority’s power has been extended up to Lahore division which comprises Lahore, Sheikhupura, Kasur and Nankana Sahib and the role of Town Municipal administration has been eliminated in approval of housing schemes.Justice Shehzada Mazhar issued this order on a petition moved by a private housing scheme, National Bank of Pakistan Officers Cooperative Housing Society, questioning legality of the notification as its scheme is also being transferred to LDA.The petitioner-society through its counsel contended Punjab government amended section 13 of LDA Act 1975 and empowered it to take up matters of all private schemes and Town Municipal officers were required to transfer all pending or approved cases of land use and private housing scheme to LDA. He said two notifications were issued on November 26, 2013 and January 1st, 2014 in this regard. The counsel pointed out that under LDA Act, an already approved scheme could not be transferred to LDA. He said Director General LDA has been directed to take up the matter of petitioner-society on misconceived pretext that the jurisdiction of LDA has been extended up to Lahore division due to amendment in LDA act. The petitioner’s counsel further argued that TMAs had been made toothless and the powers of mapping, land used control, master planning of private housing schemes have been taken back from them and given to LDA. He said the powers of TMAs could not be curtailed through an amendment in LDA Act because they derived powers from Punjab Local Government Ordinance 2001.The counsel said NBP housing scheme comprising 901 Kanals 13 marlas was established for the officers of bank and all legal requirements had been met. He said only a formal approval of the scheme was to be given by TMO Nishtar Town, Lahore. The petitioner requested the court to set aside the operation of notifications issued by Punjab government. He further prayed that the TMO Nishtar Town might be refrained from transfer NBP scheme case to LDA and issue approval letter to petitioner-society.After hearing the initial arguments, the court suspended the operations of both notification and sought replies from Punjab government and other respondents within 15 days.This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 31-Jan-2014 here.