Servant quarters razed: Displaced LHC staff ‘will be helped’

Punjab’s top judge will ask govt to provide alternative housing options.

Our Correspondent March 01, 2017

LAHORE: Punjab’s top judge has said that families displaced by the demolition of the residential quarters inside the Lahore High Court complex will be helped financially. The chief justice will also write to the Punjab government to provide alternative residences to the LHC employees.

LHC Chief Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah said this on Monday while clarifying his position on a news story about the high court’s decision to raze 36 servant quarters on court premises because of security concerns.

Talking to reporters, he said the LHC was not a residential area and owing to the current wave of terrorism, it was not easy to protect families of these employees living inside the court, particularly during night.

Punjab police chief Mushtaq Sukhera, the LHC registrar, Punjab home secretary, AIG (special branch), Lahore capital city police officer and DIG Operations (Lahore) among others accompanied the chief justice. Justice Mansoor said the servant quarters were being demolished on the advice of the representatives of security institutions, who had informed the court about threats to the judges as well as lawyers.

He said he had ordered for writing a letter to the authorities concerned for providing residences for the displaced employees on a priority basis. He added he took this decision ‘in the best interest of his subordinates’.

“We are in a war-like situation and we have to win this war,” he said, adding that a security plan would be devised to restrict unnecessary people from entering the LHC premises. Only two people would be allowed inside the courts for one case hearing.

The CJ also appealed to the LHC staff, advocates and litigants for cooperating in ensuring foolproof security. He thanked the security officials for providing security at the Lahore High Court Bar Association elections last Saturday.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2017.          


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