SC berates NAB, SUPARCO over ‘non-cooperation’

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–State institutions not working under ambit of law, remarks SC judge

ISLAMABAD: The top court on Monday reprimanded the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) over what it termed their “non-cooperation” in implementing a ruling of the apex court in Bahria Town case.

Last year, the Supreme Court (SC) had declared that the total area of land acquired by the real estate company in Takht Pari, Rawalpindi, was 2,210 acres and not 1,741 acres as claimed by the developers.

While chairing a hearing of the three-member implementation bench on Bahria Town case, Justice Azmat Saeed warned the respondents that the judges were “about to lose their temperament”.

The top court had dismissed Bahria Town’s petition, noting that the matter of action against those responsible for these encroachments will be dealt with by an implementation bench of the court.

During the hearing, the judge directed NAB to ensure progress “through its actions”.

Justice Saeed inquired to the NAB prosecutor regarding why didn’t the accountability watchdog submit its report on Bahria Town despite being asked to. “Let us know if you can’t follow orders. You were given a time frame of three months but there has been no development so far,” he said.

“Sir, this is not the case,” the NAB prosecutor pleaded. At this, the SC judge reacted, “The fact is that no cooperation has been shown [on the part of NAB]”.

The judge highlighted that a separate joint interrogation team has completed its investigations into the Bahria Town case in Karachi, but still, the accountability watchdog did nothing.

“Why don’t we take action against the NAB under the contempt of court,” the judge said, adding that the court should issue a contempt of court notice to SUPARCO as it also failed to submit the report it was ordered to file.

Justice Saeed said he knows that the director general of SUPARCO is a “Major General” and ordered him to appear before the court on the next hearing.

He remarked that the state institutions were not working under the ambit of law. “Even if someone is facing an issue, he is not ready to reveal it,” the judge said.

“Tell your client to cooperate with the court,” Justice Saeed advised Ali Zafar, the counsel of Bahria Town. “Malik Riaz will be held responsible for the rights of allottees are affected.”

The hearing of the case will now resume on Wednesday.

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