SC seeks govt’s response over legality of announced grant to MPs

Apex court issues notice to AGP, cabinet secretary, principal secretary to PM, federal finance secretary, all the provincial chief secretaries and finance secretaries, all the provincial law officers and Advocate General Islamabad Capital Territory

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The Supreme Court has decided to ascertain legality of recently announced development grant of Rs500 million to each lawmaker as apex court asked Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) to apprise the court whether Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved the fund within a constitutional and legal framework.

On Wednesday, during proceedings of a case, a two-judge bench of the top court comprising Justice Qazi Faez Isa and Justice Maqbool Baqar took notice over media reports about the prime minister announcement of January 28 to grant funds to each member of the national provincial assemblies.

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After summoning the AGP Khalid Javed Khan, the court cited its previous judgment of December 5, 2013, that had ruled the constitution doesn’t permit use or allocate of funds to MNAs, MPAs or notables at the sole discretion of prime minister or chief minister.

The 38-page judgment, authored by the then Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, in suo moto case, noted that former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf had doled out billions of rupees in the form of development funds ten days after having completed his tenure in office.

During the course of hearing on Wednesday, Justice Qazi Faez Isa asked from the AGP whether distribution of the funds by the premier was in accordance with the Constitution and cited verdicts of the top court – whether the federal and provincial governments had handed over or intended to hand over monies to the legislators and/or carry out development works identified by them.

The bench categorically said that before proceeding further with the matter in hand the court wanted to ascertain the answers to the raised questions.

Responding to the bench query the AGP sought time to ascertain the facts saying he will not countenance anything against any provision of the Constitution and the cited precedent of the Supreme Court.

Justice Isa observed while addressing the AGP that he may seek a response from the government and inform the court saying, “If these funds turn out to be in accordance with the Constitution, we will conclude this case,”. “However, if the decision was not made in line with the Constitution, we will initiate action against the same,” he said, adding, “in such a case, the matter will be referred to the chief justice to constitute a bench to initiate legal proceedings.”

Responding to the observations, the AGP assured the bench that he will seek a response from the government and convey the same to the court, adding any decision with regard to the funds will be in line with the law, Constitution, and court verdicts.

The bench issued notices to federation through cabinet secretary/principal secretary to the prime minister, secretary ministry of finance, government of Pakistan and to all the provincial governments through their respective chief secretaries and secretary finance departments. Notices were also issued to the AGP and to all the provincial law officers and Advocate General for Islamabad Capital Territory.

Later, hearing of the matter was adjourned till February 10.

The writer heads a leading news wire service ‘The Law Today Pakistan’ commonly known as TLTP. He has a special focus on news relating to superior courts adjudication, access to right of information, civil, political, social and economic rights under the approach that existing cyber regime realization ensures procedural fairness in administrative law. He can be reached at editor@tltpnews.com

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SC seeks govt’s response over legality of announced grant to MPs - TLTP NEWS SC seeks govt’s response over legality of announced grant to MPs - TLTP NEWS

SC seeks govt’s response over legality of announced grant to MPs

Apex court issues notice to AGP, cabinet secretary, principal secretary to PM, federal finance secretary, all the provincial chief secretaries and finance secretaries, all the provincial law officers and Advocate General Islamabad Capital Territory

7
SHARES
49
VIEWS

The Supreme Court has decided to ascertain legality of recently announced development grant of Rs500 million to each lawmaker as apex court asked Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) to apprise the court whether Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved the fund within a constitutional and legal framework.

On Wednesday, during proceedings of a case, a two-judge bench of the top court comprising Justice Qazi Faez Isa and Justice Maqbool Baqar took notice over media reports about the prime minister announcement of January 28 to grant funds to each member of the national provincial assemblies.

READ ALSO

After summoning the AGP Khalid Javed Khan, the court cited its previous judgment of December 5, 2013, that had ruled the constitution doesn’t permit use or allocate of funds to MNAs, MPAs or notables at the sole discretion of prime minister or chief minister.

The 38-page judgment, authored by the then Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, in suo moto case, noted that former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf had doled out billions of rupees in the form of development funds ten days after having completed his tenure in office.

During the course of hearing on Wednesday, Justice Qazi Faez Isa asked from the AGP whether distribution of the funds by the premier was in accordance with the Constitution and cited verdicts of the top court – whether the federal and provincial governments had handed over or intended to hand over monies to the legislators and/or carry out development works identified by them.

The bench categorically said that before proceeding further with the matter in hand the court wanted to ascertain the answers to the raised questions.

Responding to the bench query the AGP sought time to ascertain the facts saying he will not countenance anything against any provision of the Constitution and the cited precedent of the Supreme Court.

Justice Isa observed while addressing the AGP that he may seek a response from the government and inform the court saying, “If these funds turn out to be in accordance with the Constitution, we will conclude this case,”. “However, if the decision was not made in line with the Constitution, we will initiate action against the same,” he said, adding, “in such a case, the matter will be referred to the chief justice to constitute a bench to initiate legal proceedings.”

Responding to the observations, the AGP assured the bench that he will seek a response from the government and convey the same to the court, adding any decision with regard to the funds will be in line with the law, Constitution, and court verdicts.

The bench issued notices to federation through cabinet secretary/principal secretary to the prime minister, secretary ministry of finance, government of Pakistan and to all the provincial governments through their respective chief secretaries and secretary finance departments. Notices were also issued to the AGP and to all the provincial law officers and Advocate General for Islamabad Capital Territory.

Later, hearing of the matter was adjourned till February 10.

The writer heads a leading news wire service ‘The Law Today Pakistan’ commonly known as TLTP. He has a special focus on news relating to superior courts adjudication, access to right of information, civil, political, social and economic rights under the approach that existing cyber regime realization ensures procedural fairness in administrative law. He can be reached at editor@tltpnews.com

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