KARACHI - The Sindh High Court (SHC) Wednesday dismissed another appeal of Sharjeel Inam Memon for allowing him to shift to a private hospital.  Sharjeel’s lawyer moved another application for the modification in earlier court judgment regarding bail application. 

A two-judge bench headed by Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro heard the arguments. Sharjeel’s lawyer in is arguments pleaded the court to modify the earlier order and allow his client to shift to private hospital. The counsel also argued that the apex court in its order did not restrict Sharjeel to move out for the medical treatment, as well as the trial had also allowed him to move outside the jail in this regard. Therefore, he should be allowed for the medical facility outside the prison.

Sharjeel counsel also stated that NAB did not challenge the trail court’s order and they had no any objection in this regard. Before the apex court order, Sharjeel was provided proper medical treatment but was shifted back to the prison.

Earlier, a bail application of Sharjeel Inam Memon, former Sind information minister was dismissed by the same bench, in a reference pertaining to corruption of Rs5.77 billion in government advertisements. Sharjeel Memon had submitted the bail plea on medical ground by saying that he was suffering from severe backaches and a medical board had advised him to seek treatment abroad. He pleaded to grant him a bail on medical grounds. Memon, a former provincial information minister, was arrested in October last year by federal anti-graft watchdog officials from outside the SHC after his interim bail plea was revoked. The bureau had booked him and 11 others–including the former provincial information secretary, other officials of the information department and heads of different advertisement agencies – for allegedly embezzling Rs5.77 billion.

Final arguments sought in coal-handling terminal case

The Sindh High Court on Wednesday directed the parties to submit their final arguments by May 23 regarding a coal-handling terminal in Shireen Jinnah Colony, Clifton.

Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi was hearing the case. The counsel of Karachi Port Trust (KPT) submitted a statement regarding storage capacity of coal at KPT yard and said: “KPT has no objection if the coal lands at the yard or released by the court.”

The petitioner submitted that due to the coal terminal and its dumping, inhabitants of the area were facing serious environmental effects, which fuelled respiratory diseases in the locality. They said that tonnes of coal berthed every month and about 200,000 tonnes of the coal was handled at the terminal located at Shireen Jinnah Colony, Clifton.  Earlier, a report was presented by Sepa that stated that the whole process from unloading of coal to its dumping and transportation to different industrial units involved serious environmental hazards.

 

 

 It said that during inspection, it was noted that the coal material found on the berth and jetty flowed into the port waters during washing or rain, adding to marine pollution.

The report said that during the transportation of coal from the terminal to the coal yard, a distance of three to and four kilometres, the coal dust flew into the air from the open trucks, causing air pollution throughout the route. “It is obvious that hundreds of people in this particular location could be affected from respiratory, eye and other diseases due to the air pollution containing coal dust particles,” it added. The report said that coal dust was found in the houses situated in the densely populated area of Keamari and areas in close proximity to the terminal.

It further said that environmental issues relating to storage of coal were significantly adverse in nature as a huge quantity was being stored at the coal yard. The report further said that in view of the coal storage site and its handling in highly densely populated area in a highly crude manner, the entire area suffered an environmental disaster.

The Sindh Environmental Protection Agency had also informed that the Karachi Port Trust was operating a coal handling terminal in Shireen Jinnah Colony without adhering to the environmental laws which not only constituted an environmental hazard but also posed a serious threat to the health of the workers and people living in the vicinity.