LAHORE - The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday gave the government a last opportunity to submit reply in an appeal filed by Pakistan Muslim League–Nawaz (PML-N) leader Hanif Abbasi against his life term in the ephedrine quota case.

A division bench consisting of Justice Aalia Neelum and Justice Sardar Muhammad Sarfaraz Dogar expressed displeasure over the counsel representing the government for not submitting reply in the appeal.

The bench warned that No excuse would be heard on the next hearing and adjourned the hearing untill March 28.

Abbasi’s counsel pleaded before the bench that his clinet was suffering from four different diseases. He added that Abbasi also suffered a cardiac arrest inside the jail. He argued seven other accused named in the case had been freed by the trial while his client was awarded life term.

He pleaded to the high court to suspend his client’s sentence and order his release on bail.

LHC strength reduces to 47 against 60

In June 2012, the Anit-Narcotics Force (ANF) had filed a case against Abbasi and his accomplices under sections 9-C, 14 and 15 of the Control of Narcotics Substances (CNS) Act for misuse of 500kg of ephedrine.

In July 2018, the PML-N leader had been apprehended from the court premises after CNS Court of Rawalpindi Judge Sardar Akram awarded him life imprisonment. However, the court had acquitted seven other accused because of lack of evidence.

Another judge retires

After the retirement of Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin Ahmad of the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday, the strength of LHC judges has reduced to 47 against the total strength of 60 which will further aggravate the situation as the case backlog is increasing with every passing day.

Justice (r) Qazi Amin has attained the age of superannuation, 62 years in case of a Lahore High Court judge. The retired judge’s services were eulogised at a ceremony also attended by LHC Chief Justice Sardar Muhammad Shamim Khan and other High Court judges.

At the farewell ceremony organised in his honour, the chief justice presented a souvenir and bouquet to Justice (r) Amin Ahmad.

As already 13 vacancies of LHC judges are lying vacant, the retirement of Mr Amin Ahmed will definitely add to the massive backlog at the Lahore High Court.

Recently three LHC judges including former chief justice Anwaarul Haq retired. Justice Ali Akhbar Qureshi, who became LHC judge on November 07, 2014, retired on December 29, 2018. Similarly, Justice Ibadur Rehman Lodhi, who took the oath as LHC judge on March 27, 2018, bade farewell to the profession recently.

 

Court seeks reply on plea

against Careem ad

The Lahore High Court (LHC) issued notices to the Punjab government and others for April 5 and sought reply on a writ petition filed against an alleged unethical advertisement launched by Careem, a service-oriented ride-sharing company.

The petition filed by Shahbaz Akmal was heard by Justice Shakilur Rehman Khan. On behalf of the petitioner, his counsel pleaded that the ride-sharing service provider uses “unethical language” in its billboard advertisements  to promote its bike service. He added that the advertisements encourage girls to run away from their marriages, with the tagline, “Apni shaadi se bhagna ho tau Careem Bike karo (Book a Careem Bike if you want to run away from your wedding).”

The counsel pleaded that that the advertisement was not only against Islamic teachings but also a violation of Article 31 of the Constitution.

 

 Parks and Horticulture Authority (PHA) Act 2012 Section 21, and PHA Lahore Regulations 2013 Clause 10.

He submitted that the court may kindly issue directions for removal of immoral advertisement besides imposing fine on Careem and action against relevant PHA officials for allowing such ads.

The bench after recording initial arguments issued notices to Punjab government and other respondents and sought their reply for April 5.

The company’s popularity is on the decrease as people claim that they witness a good response from the app-based services early. But now the traditional taxi drivers after getting associated with it have started using the old dirty tricks.