LAHORE - The Lahore High Court Tuesday directed the Punjab government to submit reply in a petition challenging removal of Noorul Ameen Mengal as director general of Punjab Food Authority.

Justice Shahid Jamil Khan passed the order on petition filed by two citizens, allowing the officer to continue with the post of PFA DG if he had not relinquished the charge.   Justice Khan directed the Punjab chief secretary to submit detailed reply. The court adjourned hearing till July 05.

Advocate Saad Rasool appeared on behalf of the petitioners, arguing that the government was empowered to appoint director general at the PFA under section 10 of the Punjab Food Authority Act 2011.  The counsel questioned the powers of the government to remove the DG of the authority. He argued that the provincial government had no power to remove director of the authority.  The board of members of the authority, however, he said could remove/change authority’s director general, he contended.

The counsel said no decision had been taken by the board members of the authority regarding removal of the DG.

The interim government removed him from the office by exercising beyond its jurisdiction as it was mandate was just to ensure free and fair election, the counsel submitted.  The bench questioned the maintainability of the petition on which the counsel said that it was for the sake of public interest and was not the only matter of public servant’s removal, therefore, they were not required to approach the relevant services tribunal.

Hearing of Abbasi, Fawad Ch’s petition put off

The LHC adjourned for Wednesday (today) hearing on petition moved by former PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi challenging rejection of his nomination papers to contest election from his home constituency, NA-57, Murree, and his disqualification for life. A two-member bench headed by Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi was hearing the case. The federal government failed to submit reply due to which the bench adjourned the hearing till today.   The same bench also adjourned hearing of the petition filed by Fawad Chaudhary till today.

Previously, the LHC allowed Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Fawad Chaudahry by suspending decisions of respective appellate tribunals regarding rejection of their nomination papers and their disqualification under Article 62 (1) (f) of the Constitution.