ISLAMABAD-The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Tuesday directed the petitioner to assist the court about Islamic as well as legal perspective in the matter of challenging the government’s decision to construct a Hindu temple in the federal capital.

A division bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice of IHC Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Ghulam Azam Qambrani conducted hearing of the Intra Court Appeal (ICA) filed by a lawyer Chaudhary Tanveer Akhtar challenging a single bench’s verdict wherein it had disposed of the writ petitions filed against construction of temple in Islamabad. After issuing the aforementioned directions, the bench deferred hearing in this matter for one week for further proceedings. 

Petitioner Chaudhary Tanveer filed the ICA in person and cited Principal Secretary to Prime Minister, Federal Minister for Religious Affairs, Federal Minister for Interior, Chairman Capital Development Authority (CDA) and chairman CDA board as respondents.

He adopted that the state is responsible to provide health, education and justice for public but this directive on the part of respondents has raised a lot of questions. He added that the district judiciary in Islamabad is functioning in rented premises since long but the government has failed to provide the facility of judicial complex and public are suffering from one door to other door.

The petitioner contended that the CDA is a responsible authority who failed to consider this fact that this impugned allotment which is a void ab initio document, itself lost its sanctity as per contents of the allotment letter, even then they are not taking action of cancellation of allotment.

Therefore, he prayed to the court that the impugned judgment of single bench of IHC dated July 7 may be set aside and all acts done by respondents for allotment of plot for temple in Islamabad against master plan of CDA may be declared as unlawful.

Earlier, a single bench of IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq disposed of three identical petitions filed by lawyer Chaudhary Tanveer Akhtar, Muhammad Yahya Ahmed Minhas and Khushnood Ahmad Khan.

The IHC bench said in its judgment that the representative of Capital Development Authority and learned counsel for Authority submitted that sub-sector H-9/2 has plots allocated for graveyard of minorities, hence on that basis the allocation was made.

It added, “It seems that the allottee namely IHP (Institute of Hindu Panchayat) did not adhere to the Rules and Regulations of Capital Development Authority by submitting building plan and seeking its approval and on the said basis the construction of plot was stopped. Even otherwise Capital Development Authority is entitled to take appropriate action in accordance with the term of the allotment (Clauses 3 and 24 of Allotment letter dated 26.12.2017) and its laws for violation of the terms of allotment, if any.”

“The fact remains that no construction at present is taking place at the site, in question and is unlikely to commence till compliance is made with terms of allotment and Capital Development Authority laws. As noted above, Capital Development Authority is still to approve building plan as and when the same is submitted and while doing so can holistically review the matter. It is an admitted position that no construction on any site can commence by any allottee/lessee unless it complies with the Rules and Regulations of Capital Development Authority,” maintained the court.

Justice Aamer noted, “For what has been stated above, no occasion arises for this Court to interfere; hence the above-mentioned petitions are disposed of accordingly. However, in future if the petitioners have any grievance in the matter they may agitate the matter again.”