Thar deaths case: SHC seeks copy of Supreme Court's order

Sindh govt asks SHC to stop parallel suo motu proceedings in both courts

Correspondent June 02, 2017
A Thari woman tends to her sick child at the Civil Hospital in Hyderabad. PHOTO: INP

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) directed on Thursday the provincial government's law officer to submit a copy of the Supreme Court's order passed in a suo motu case regarding the deaths of children in the drought-hit Tharparkar district.

A two-judge bench, headed by the Chief Justice (CJ) Ahmed Ali M Sheikh, gave this direction while hearing a petition seeking judicial inquiry to fix responsibility of the deaths of many children in the desert region on the relevant provincial authorities.

Infant mortality: The lost children of Thar

At the outset of the hearing, the additional advocate general, Ghulam Mustafa Mahesar, informed the court that similar suo motu proceedings were initiated by the apex court and the same were still continuing there. Therefore, he argued that the parallel proceedings in the high court could not be initiated on the same matter, which was also being heard by the Supreme Court (SC). He pleaded the court to dispose of the suo motu matter.

Mahesar also opposed an application filed by a civil rights group - Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research - seeking permission to become intervener in the suo motu proceedings. He argued that since the parallel proceedings cannot be held by both the SHC and the SC, therefore, there was no question for the applicant to become an intervener. He requested the court to dismiss the application.

1,340 children have died in Thar since 2014, court told

However, CJ Sheikh directed the law officer to submit a copy of the order passed by the SC in the suo motu proceedings, as pointed out by him, initiated over the deaths of the children in Tharparkar. The matter was adjourned to a date to be later notified by the office.


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