Islamabad -  The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday directed Capital Development Authority (CDA) Chairman Sheikh Ansar Aziz to submit his written reply in a petition challenging his appointment as acting chairman of the authority.

A single bench of IHC comprising Justice Athar Minallah conducted hearing of the two petitions challenging appointment of Aziz as acting CDA chairman. One petition was moved by Farrukh Nawaz and the other was filed by Raja Eshan.

The petitioners moved the court through their counsels GM Chaudhry and Raja Shafqat Abbasi respectively.

They nominated federal government through Prime Minister Secretariat, Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) secretary, Establishment Division secretary and CDA chairman as respondents.

The petitioners adopted before the IHC that CDA chairman should be a gazetted officer and a public representative could not be appointed on this post. They said that Islamabad mayor does not qualify to become part of civic agency board under the rules.

They stated that Aziz has to submit reply that under what authority of law he is holding the office of the CDA chairman, which is under the administrative control of CADD ministry as well as the overall administrative control of the federal government through the prime minister.

The petitioners said that Aziz through a notification dated September 6, 2016 was nominated as CDA chairman.

They argued that the said notification was illegal, without lawful authority, in conflict of interest, in violation of law and principle of separation of powers.

Petitioners maintained that the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Local Government Act is subservient to the CDA Act 1960. It is strange that the head of the subservient institution has been appointed as a head of its superior institution.

They pointed that Aziz was elected as mayor and not CDA chairman. The Mayor Office got limited functions under the ICT Local Government Act while the civic agency got more powers and the appointment of Aziz as CDA chairman is illegal.

Therefore, the petitioners prayed to the court to seek reply from the mayor/CDA chairman that under what authority of law he is holding the office. They further requested that the notification regarding the appointment of Aziz as CDA chairman may be declared illegal as well as all his functions that he performed in this capacity.