ISLAMABAD - The Islamabad High Court (IHC) yesterday turned down the Pakistan Sugar Mills Association’s (PSMA) Intra-Court Appeal (ICA) challenging a single bench’s verdict which had turned down its petition against the report of Sugar Inquiry Commission (SIC).

A division bench of the IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb announced its verdict reserved on July 24 after hearing the arguments of all the parties in the ICA filed by the PSMA.

In the ICA, the counsel for the association had requested the court to declare IHC judgment dated June 20 as null and void. He further said that the commission submitted its report but there was no notification of its formation.

In this regard, a single bench of IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah had turned down the petition challenging the report of Sugar Inquiry Commission.

The dual bench noted in its written judgment, “In view of the above discussion, we find no merit in this appeal, which is dismissed with no order as to costs. It is, however, expected that expeditious compliance shall be shown with the directions given by the learned Judge-in-Chambers in the impugned judgment dated 20.06.2020.”

The IHC bench stated that the counsel for the appellants took us to different portions of the inquiry report to demonstrate that the three members of the Inquiry Committee had pre-judged the matter by pinning the responsibility for the sugar price hike on the appellants.

“We cannot bring ourselves to agree with the learned counsel for the appellants. Neither does the inquiry report dated 24.03.2020 nor the Convener’s letter dated 09.03.2020 give any conclusive finding against the appellants. The report of the Inquiry Committee was submitted after the Inquiry Commission had been constituted. There is a specific reference to this in the inquiry report,” it added.