ISLAMABAD: The top court on Monday directed the civic body of the federal capital to ensure land is allotted for the construction of new hospitals in the city.
The court also restrained the apex anti-corruption watchdog from taking action unilaterally.
This was directed by a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court (SC), led by Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar, as it disposed of a suo moto case pertaining to shortage of public hospitals in Islamabad.
As the hearing of the case started, CJP Nisar expressed his displeasure over the absence of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) chairman.
He noted that if the health secretary can be present in court, why does the CDA chief have to be summoned every time.
During the last hearing of the case, CDA officials had told the top court that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had initiated an inquiry into the allotment of land over an application filed with it.
The chief justice had observed that the government of Bahrain had wanted to donate Rs10 billion for the construction of a hospital and the CDA was given 15 days to make a decision regarding the allotment of land for it, but the purported inquiry apparently slowed the process.
However, on Monday, a NAB prosecutor told the court that the bureau had not issued any such notice.
SC orders CDA to allot land for hospital
The CJP remarked that some officials of the civic body seem to have misguided the court.
The court, though, observed that NAB would not interfere in the issues regarding allotment of land for the construction of hospitals in Islamabad and any interference by NAB officials would be considered as obstructing the case proceedings.
The anti-corruption body was directed to not take any action without first seeking the court’s approval.
The CJP observed that the CDA chairman and other officials would be held accountable for misreporting after conducting an inquiry.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 8th, 2019.
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