Suspension order: NADRA official moves SC against LHC verdict

Apex court to take up deputy chairman’s appeal tomorrow


Danish Hussain September 24, 2017
National identity record keeper says lots of other subjects excluded in form. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: A senior official of the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) on Saturday filed an appeal in the Supreme Court against his suspension orders passed by the Lahore High Court (LHC).

In its order dated September 8, 2017, the LHC had directed NADRA to suspend its deputy chairperson, Syed Muzaffar Ali Shah, until next hearing into the case, terming his elevation to the post “illegal and in violation of the NADRA Ordinance”.

Challenging the jurisdiction of the LHC on many counts, Shah requested the apex court to set aside the suspension order. A Supreme Court bench, comprising Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, will hear the case on Monday (tomorrow).

The LHC had passed the decision relying on the NADRA chairman’s statement that the deputy chairman was appointed on the ‘desire’ of former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan during a meeting of the NADRA board chaired by Nisar, which is a clear violation of rules and regulations.

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“The LHC exercised its suo motu jurisdiction in violation of the law settled by the SC. It’s a matter of record that the petitioner was neither impleaded as respondent nor any civil miscellaneous application was moved seeking annulment or suspension of the petitioner,” reads the appeal filed by Shah in the SC.

Clarifying position of the former interior minister, Shah stated that he attended the meeting as a special invitee and the minister’s mere presence cannot vitiate the entire proceedings of the NADRA authority.

The post of deputy chairman of NADRA was created in 2008. A sub-committee of the NADRA human resource department proposed the post keeping in mind the administrative burden on the NADRA chairperson. The proposal made under Section 35 of the NADRA Ordinance was later approved by its authority.

Former NADRA chairman Tariq Malik was the first officer who was appointed as deputy chairman. Later, NADRA officers, including Dr Tahir Akram and Naveed Jan, also served as deputy chairman. In 2016, Shah was appointed to the post.

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