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LHC suspends notification that gave judicial powers to commissioners, DCs

July 9, 2020 01:35 PM


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The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday suspended a notification issued by the provincial government, which authorised the commissioners and deputy commissioners to use judicial powers, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

As the LHC issued notices to the advocate general and others while seeking a reply, Chief Justice Muhammad Qasim warned that contempt of court notices would be issued to everyone from the chief minister to the chief secretary, if the petition was approved.

The chief justice referred to the petition which, the court was hearing, is filed by a lawyer against the Punjab government’s move. The petitioner has sought the court intervention to declare the notification dated June 17 null and void.

As Additional Advocate General Malik Abdul Aziz appeared before the court, Chief Justice Qasim expressed his annoyance and observed what kind of circus was being staged. Under which law the commissioners and the deputy commissioners are using judicial powers, he questioned.

In his reply, the additional advocate general said the top divisional and district bureaucrats were assigned the authority after amending Section 14 to enable them to adjudicate petty cases/matters.

On the court’s insistence, Malik cited various laws. But the chief justice asked the top law officer in the province to read out the Section 14-A again, as he was unable to satisfy the court with a reasonable answer.

The petitioner has made the Punjab government and other respondents. He says both judiciary and administration have a different set of powers but the provincial government has assigned magistrate’s role to the divisional and district administrative heads.

According to the petitioner, the notification is a violation of Article 2-A and Article 9. The higher judiciary has made it clear through its judgments that the executive cannot use judicial role and authority while the LHC too has earlier issued a notification on this subject.



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