LAHORE - A Lahore High Court full bench on Tuesday appointed two amicus curie on petitions challenging the construction of elevated express way by acquiring land on urgency basis from Shadman, LOS, Samnabad to Motorway II.

An amicus curie, as the proceedings commenced, told the bench that it does not seem that there is any urgency in acquiring the land for this project and how the government terming this project a welfare project.

The full bench headed by Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah heard the arguments and adjourned further proceedings until today (Wednesday).

The bench had asked the government to convince the court that what is the scope and nature of urgency required to invoke Section 17 of the Land Acquisition Act?, whether the Lahore falls within the scope of ‘urgency’ under section 17 of the Act. The bench also asked the government to submit reply whether issuance of Notification under Section 4 of the Act must be preceded by detailed feasibility in the shape of PC-1? Whether feasibility must provide for Environmental Impact Assessment, other feasible alternatives and the result of private negotiations for purchase of the land in question? And what is the scope and importance of Section 5-A of the Act, which deals with public objections.

A number of petitions had been filed against the construction of elevated express way.

The petitioners submitted that the government had imposed an emergency like situation and acquiring land from them by demolishing their homes to build the express way.

 They said the government also did not convey them covey them the reasons behind this urgency. The petitioners requested the judge to set aside the ‘Emergency Plan by the government to acquire land for this purpose from the local residents.