LAHORE -The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the removal of Khokhar brothers’ names from Exit Control List (ECL) after concluding a suo motu notice taken by former chief justice Saqib Nisar against PML-N lawmakers Afzal Khokhar and Saiful Malook Khokhar.

A three-member bench was hearing the suo motu case at the apex court’s Lahore Registry. The bench consisted of Justice Manzoor Malik, Justice Sardar Tariq Masood and Justice Mansoor Ali Shah. The bench ordered the authorities concerned to remove their names put on the no-fly list on the orders of former chief justice Saqib Nisar. The ex-CJP had taken the suo motu notice after a complaint filed by overseas Pakistanis against them. They had alleged that the PML-N leaders had illegally occupied their property in Lahore.

Justice Manzoor Malik remarked that the three-member bench did not have material information regarding the situation which led to the suo motu action taken by the former chief justice.

He further remarked that those blessed with authority by Allah almighty should cautiously use it. He added that the court could not go beyond its limitations, saying that all the national institutions ought to work in their won limits.

He directed Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Director General Amina Imran Khan not use the apex court to get the matter referred to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). He remarked: “Do your own job and let the Supreme Court do its duty.”

During the hearing, the bench asked, “Had the LDA and Board of Revenue Member Tariq Najeeb taken any action against the accused before the suo motu notice?” The revenue official responded that they had acted upon the reports which found the accused guilty.

On the revenue officials’ reply, the judge asked them to take action as per the law, and remarked that neither the judges are prosecutors nor the investigators.

The bench also directed the Anti-Corruption Establishment officials to conclude the cases against the PML-N leaders as per the law.

On the complaint that that ACE officials were harassing her, the court asked the LDA director general to take the legal course against them and not to involve the court in the matter.

On Jan 6, 2019, the ACE submitted a report in the court. In the report, the ACE said that the Khokhar brothers had occupied 40 kanals of state land and paid only one of the 10 people who sold the land to them. The report added that Khokhar Palace was then constructed on joint lands grabbed by them.

MNA Afzal was apprehended outside the Supreme Court’s Lahore registry. However the next day, a judicial magistrate at Model Town courts granted him post-arrest bail.

The apex court had also ordered the ACE officials to investigation against the Khokhar brothers and register a case against all those revenue officials allegedly involved the consolidation of the disputed property in their name.