LAHORE – The Lahore High Court on Monday set aside the appointment of Zahid Bashir as chairman Red Crescent Society Provincial Branch (RCSPB) and restored Mian Muhammad Hanif as chairman after setting aside his removal notification.Justice Mansoor Ali Shah of the Lahore High Court was hearing the two petitions challenging the appointment of Zahid Bashir besides of five members of society’s managing committee.The court has also set aside the appointments of five other members of managing committee. These include Qasim Feroz, Muhammad Aslam Bohra, Liaqat Ali Gill, Malik Zulfqar and Hassan Kaifi. Later, Malk Zulfqar was replaced by Mian Shahid Abbas Advocate.During the course of arguments, Liaquat Chishti and petitioners’ counsel said the appointment of Zahid Bashir as RCS Punjab’s chairman was illegal and against the rules of society.He contended the merit was neglected and his appointment was done on the basis of political interference. Governor Punjab appointed him who was not authorized to do so, he argued.He said Governor also did not discuss this matter with Managing Committee for proper consultation and did appoint Zahid Bashir its chairman. The court observed that Governor could not appoint any person as Red Crescent Society’s chairman without consultation with managing committee of the society.The court setting aside the appointment of Mr Bashir restored the chairmanship of Mian Muhammad Hanif.Ministry directed to receive Haj applications: The Lahore High Court on Monday directed the Ministry of Religious Affairs to receive applications from new Haj Group Organisers or tour operators according to the new Haj policy for their enrolment seeking allotment of quota.Different new HGOs filed through their counsel Azhar Siddique a civil miscellaneous application in an already pending matter.During the course of hearing, Azhar said the ministry of religious affairs and directorate of Haj were not receiving the applications.The ministry submitted its reply stating that the date, May 15, had been fixed for receiving of the applications from new operators.However, the new HGOs rejected the ministry’ reply and said their applications were not being received because the ministry wanted to oblige old tour operators.After arguments, Justice Uma Ata Bandial directed the ministry and Lahore directorate of Haj to receive the applications from new HGOs according to the new Haj Policy 2012. The court also sought reply from respondents by May 18.In main petition, the new HGOs had requested the court to issue appropriate directions to the respondents for associating the stake holders and non-governmental associations in making the Haj policies friendly, based on transparency and negation of favouritism by following the principles of natural justice.