KARACHI - The Sindh High Court on Wednesday sought explanation from the Sindh government regarding hiring services of private lawyers to counsel its important cases in different courts, until October 30.

A division bench headed by Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar was hearing a plea filed by Faique Ali Jagirani pleading to restrain the Sindh government’s department to hire the services of private lawyers.

Mr Jagirani submitted that any action taken by the government or its institutions hiring private lawyers are illegal, unlawful and without any legal effects, as supra structure based upon illegal foundation cannot be allowed to stand.

The petitioner contended that such acts are gross violation of principle of natural justice, and clear violation of Section 10 (1) of Sindh Revenue Board Act 2011 failed to conduct its affairs and functions. He added that this act will not be covered/saved from the section of 13 of Sindh Revenue Board Act 2011, since the malafide intention and illegal act was done with ultra vires motives and misusing the powers which were never conferred with them and as result loss of the national exchequers to great extend.

He requested the bench to order the respondents to provide all the details of record of appointing private advocates without permission from the law department for necessary action by the courts from 2011 onwards.

After hearing initial arguments submitted by the plaintiff, the court directed the Advocate General Sindh to appear in person in the next hearing as the legal points have been raised in the petition. 

The plaintiff submitted in his petition that government departments have been violating of principle of natural justice, and clear violation f article 140 of the constitue and Sindh Business Rules 1986 by appointing private advocate despite the availability of AG Sindh and its law officers to defend the Sindh government interest/litigation/case without consultation of Law Department and nothing was provided to honorable court to show that permission has been granted as per the law.

The petitioner pleaded the court to declare all the Vakalatnama filled by private lawyers to defend the government’s department illegal and void, and to initiate disciplinary action/inquiry against the respondents for illegal acts and without following rule of law and causing loss to our national exchequer to the great extent.

“The respondents should be directed to produce invoices/fees paid to private advocates who were appointed without legal procedures for and deposit the same in the national exchequer” pleaded the plaintiff.

Mr Jagirani also prayed to direct the respondents to submit details report for hiring private counsels on what urgent needs across the department of government of Sindh and also direct them to conduct the proper training of existing law officers / staff to ensure to handle the complex cases in future to save government revenue by avoiding hiring the private advocates.

He also seeks the direction from the court to issue direction to appoint more law officers if required by the respondents to meet the requirement of all Sindh government departments in more efficient manners.  The plaintiff made respondents to the Sindh chief secretary, law secretary, advocate general Sindh, Sindh revenue board, and others.