LAHORE - The Lahore High Court on Monday issued notices to the Punjab housing secretary and the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) on a petition filed by residents of various housing societies, which have been declared illegal.
Advocate Ishtiaq Chaudhry appeared on behalf of the petitioners and told the court that the LDA declared over 100 private housing schemes illegal because they were not registered with the authority. He said the LDA also stopped SNGPL from providing natural gas connections to houses in these societies that amounts to sheer violation of their fundamental rights.
The counsel said the LDA should have taken action against the owners of the housing schemes instead of depriving the residents, who were bona fide purchasers, of their basic rights. He asked the court to set aside the impugned action of the LDA for being illegal and in contrary to fundamental rights of the petitioners.
Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi heard the arguments and sought replies from the housing secretary and the LDA by Sept 12.
In another case, Justice Qureshi summoned officials of the Traffic Engineering and Planning Agency (Tepa) and the Lahore Parking Company to explain the situation about illegal parking lots, encroachments and traffic hazardous on The Mall.
Earlier, Chief Traffic Officer Malik Liaqat told the court that different departments including Tepa, LDA, social welfare and the parking company were collectively responsible for smooth sailing of traffic but these departments miserably failed to play their due role and were not cooperating with the traffic police. On this, the judge summoned officials of the relevant departments for Tuesday (today).
Hearing another matter, Justice Qureshi sought a compliance report within 15 days from deputy commissioner regarding removal of encroachments from all graveyards in the city
LHC discharges contempt notice against Ahsan
A Lahore High Court (LHC) full bench on Monday discharged a contempt of court notice issued to former interior minister Ahsan Iqbal over an anti-judiciary speech, made in April this year after accepting his apology.
The three-member bench, headed by Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, heard the plea, filed by one Munir Ahmad against Ahsan Iqbal over anti-judiciary remarks. Former minister Ahsan Iqbal, along with his counsel, Azam Nazir Tarar, appeared before the bench at the outset of hearing on Monday.
Justice Naqvi observed that another petition had been received against Ahsan Iqbal with a plea not to accept his apology in the case. He emphasised the need for adopting good attitude during the court proceedings. "Where are those people today, who had hurled verbal abuse," he questioned. "You should be a role model for your people," remarked Justice Atir Mahmood, another member of the bench, while addressing the senior PML-N leader.
To which, Ahsan Iqbal expressed his gratitude and submitted that he would be more careful about his words in future. Subsequently, the bench discharged the notice, while accepting his apology. Ahsan Iqbal had already tendered an unconditional apology over the contempt of court issue, on July 2, but the bench adjourned the matter till Sept 10, observing that it would review the matter after summer vacation while considering Ahsan Iqbal's behaviour.
The petitioner had submitted that Ahsan Iqbal, then interior minister, had used derogatory remarks against the Supreme Court judges on April 25 and the same was aired by private TV channels.
He contended that the respondents' action was barred under Articles 68 of the Constitution, but the Pakistan
Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) did not take any action despite being empowered by the PEMRA
He submitted that the authority failed to implement provisions of PEMRA ordinance and the court orders of April
16; therefore, contempt proceedings should be initiated against the respondents.