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LHC issues notice to LDA on shifting of Christian cemetery in Garden Town Lahore

LAHORE: Justice Malik Shahzad Ahmad Khan of the Lahore High Court (LHC), on Thursday, issued notice to Lahore Development Authority (LDA) on a petition challenging shifting of graves and demolishing of a Christian graveyard in Abu Bakar Block of Garden Town in order to widen the road.

The judge directed LDA to file a detailed report till July 18. He issued directives while hearing a petition filed by two residents of the area, Rana Habibur Rehman and Mufti Muhammad Abu Bakar Alvi.

The petitioners’ counsel said that graveyard for the Christians existed at the place for the last 60 years. “Now in order to construct Kalma Chowk flyover, adjacent roads are being widened and the LDA has decided to relocate the graveyard to an alternate piece of land, measuring 16 kanals in the same block,” he added. The counsel said that this new piece of land was not only disputed but was also situated in a Muslim populated locality, Abu Bakar Block in Garden Town.

He submitted that there existed no graveyard for the Muslims in the area as they had to burry their dead in Miani Sahib graveyard. He said that shifting graves and demolishing the graveyard was unlawful and it could also inflame religious passions and lead to social disturbances. He said that LDA’s act was sheer violation of Article 33 of the constitution, which bound the government to discourage racial, tribal, sectarian and provincial prejudices among citizens.

He requested the court to restrain the respondents from shifting the Christian cemetery.

LHC seeks reply from its registrar on an employee’s petition: A division bench of the Lahore High Court (LHC), on Thursday, sought a reply from the LHC registrar on an employee’s petition challenging powers of the court’s administrative committee (AC) to undo orders of a chief justice (CJ).

The bench directed the registrar to file reply in the LHC after summer vacations.

A LHC private secretary, Johnson Bernard, moved the petition arguing that the then LHC CJ Sheikh Riaz Ahmad awarded two advance increments to his private secretaries, including the petitioner and Rana Sharif in 1997. He stated that after Justice Sheikh Riaz Ahmad’s elevation to the Supreme Court (SC) this matter was put before LHC AC, which declined to give advance increments.

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