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Balochistan govt given fortnight to review Gwadar land lease

ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted two-week’s time to the Balochistan government to consult with the province’s chief minister regarding allotment of Gwadar Port Authority land to a foreign company.

A three-member bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Ghulam Rabbani and Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday was hearing a joint petition of its own initiative through a suo motu notice. Earlier on Dec 8, the court had barred Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) International Ltd from transferring immovable property of Gwadar Port Authority (GPA) till the court reached its verdict.

The SC however, had allowed the government of Balochistan to be a party as it had reservations over the deal. Appearing on notice, Balochistan Additional Advocate General Abdul Aziz Khan sought two weeks time for consulting with the chief minister on the issue, which the court allowed. Ramzan Chaudhry, the counsel for Gwadar Port Authority, Abdul Hafeez Pirzada, counsel for petitioner, Barrister Zafrullah Khan a petitioner and Anwar Kamal, counsel for Singapore Ports Authority also appeared before the court and submitted their replies.

During hearing, the Chief Justice inquired whether the government had implemented the court’s earlier interim order which had barred PSA from transferring immovable property of GPA. The court also issued notices to the respondents made by the petitioner Barrister Zafrullah Khan. On last hearing, Advocate General Balcohistan Salahuddin Mengal had filed an application seeking the permission to be a party in the case.

He had contended that the federal government neither considered the reservations of the Balochistan government, nor taken it into confidence.

Source: Pakistan Today

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