CJP orders govt to submit final plan by Dec 5

Saqib Nisar says people of Lahore are consuming contaminated water


Our Correspondent December 02, 2018
PHOTO: FILE

LAHORE: Chief Justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar ordered the government of Pakistan to submit a final plan about the installation of water treatment plants.

He was heading a two-member bench of himself and Justice Ejazul Ahsan at the SC Lahore Registry. The SC was hearing a case against the failure to complete work on water treatment plants. Punjab Minister for Housing Mian Mehmoodur Rasheed appeared before the SC Lahore Registry on Saturday.

The chief justice said all the garbage is being dumped in River Ravi and the people of Lahore have no choice but to consume contaminated water. Rasheed replied the government had been elected just a few months ago. “We are working day and night after the court's orders. A committee has been formed to install water treatment plants. A meeting has been called again on Tuesday.”

To this, the CJ asserted that the government wanted action. “It doesn't matter whether the government was formed 10 days ago or 20 days ago," said Nisar. He added the government has only six months of administration experience, but we have been running affairs for the last 21 years. “Committees are formed only to delay the procedures. The court wants to know when the action will be taken, exactly," he said. The CJ ordered that the final plan be submitted on the next hearing on December 5 (Wednesday). “The chief minister will be called to the court if required,” he concluded.

In February 2018, the SC rejected an unsatisfactory a report filed by the Punjab government with regard to the dumping of polluted water into River Ravi, CJP Nisar summoned the then Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif to appear before the apex court.

The Supreme Court’s three-judge bench, headed by the CJ, issued the summons as it took up proceedings on a suo motu notice of the supply of unclean water to Punjab’s provincial capital.

Advocate Ayesha Hamid furnished the report on the dumping of polluted water into River Ravi. The report revealed that 540 million gallons of polluted water was being drained into the river of which 480 gallons were sewage.
The findings of the report irked the top judge who observed that “Lahore is the heart of Punjab, but what is being drained into this heart. If this is the condition of the heart, then the situation of other cities can be imagined.”
“If the Sindh CM can appear in the court, why not the Punjab CM?” the CJP asked at the time. Similarly, he has also not ruled out summoning the new Punjab CM if the need arises.

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