An application was submitted in the Lahore High Court on Saturday to stay the auction of 26 shops and a restaurant at the first floor of the Park and Ride Plaza in Liberty Market.
The application was moved by the legal firm, Mohammad & Ahmed, and several traders of Liberty Market in the petition pending against the construction of the said plaza.
The petitioners said they had not yet been provided with copies of the responses submitted in the petition by the respondent. This, they said, was meant to prevent them from submitting their rejoinders.
They objected to the respondent’s request for adjournment of hearing till April 15. They said it was meant to gain time so that the government could auction the shops in the plaza and make the purchasers new stakeholders and thus a party in the case.
The application requested the court to stay the auction of 26 shops in the plaza under Section 151 of the CPC. It said government’s actions were malafide and meant to deprive the traders of their constitutional rights of parking their (and their customers) cars in front of their shops.
They said after the court issued pre-admission notices on February 9 2011, the respondents had been using tactics like auctioning all shops in the plaza so that they could get a verdict in their favour by making the purchasers a party. The petitioners claimed that Park and Ride Plaza was a commercial project. However, they held, the land used for its construction was an amenity plot. They prayed the court to issue directives for stopping the proposed auction of shops and a restaurant until a decision was reached in the petition.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 27th, 2011.