The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the project director of Zulfiqarabad Oil Terminal to make it operational within four months and directed the Sindh chief secretary to resolve the issue personally.
Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Gulzar Ahmed heard the petition filed by a citizen regarding the delay in making Zulfiqarabad Oil Terminal functional in the Supreme Court Karachi Registry.
At the outset of the hearing, the lawyer of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation said that the oil terminal has been built but the oil tanker owners park their trucks outside the facility.
Justice Sajjad Ali Shah in his remarks said that the shopkeepers want to get shops for free, the shops have been set up but the shopkeepers are not ready to go. On this occasion, the tanker owners present in the courtroom informed the court there is no facility at the terminal.
"There is no electricity, no garage, no workshop, how we go there," they added before the SC bench. The shopkeepers said that they have been asked to build the shops by themselves. The CJP got furious on the occasion and asked what has happened so far? Is this a joke? It's been 15 years, the issue is not being resolved yet.
Expressing anger at the administrator KMC, the CJP remarked, dishonesty happening everywhere, your people are asking for money from shopkeepers. If you can't build an oil terminal then there is no justification to remain as an administrator, the CJP remarked.
The administrator said that the KCM is giving space, the shops will be built by the shopkeepers themselves as they are short of funds. The SC bench directed the chief secretary to work out a solution to the problem and monitor it. The chief justice took strong exception of movement of oil tankers through the city, particularly Sunse Boulevard. He gave observation that numerous fatal accidents have occurred due to heavy traffic on the city's roads. He directed authorities concerned to devise alternative routes for tankers and trawlers.
The apex court also directed the project director to activate the Zulfiqarabad oil terminal and hand over the shops within four months.
Rule of law
Justice Gulzar Ahmed said that all efforts were being made to ensure rule of law, supremacy of constitution and independence of judiciary in the country.
"Rule of law is most important," he stated this while addressing to the ground breaking ceremony of Supreme Court Registry -Karachi on the premises of Pakistan Secretariat.
CJP said that they did not need huge buildings or any such things for dispensing justice as it could be done in anyway but because of the modern requirements everything had to be place in proper space and for that purpose buildings become mandatory. He said that rule of law was the purpose behind all these buildings.
CJP Ahmed said that the basic requirement was to maintain rule of law, supremacy of constitution and independence of judiciary that was most vital.
He said that judges, lawyers etc were trying to establish rule of law, which the country required. CJP hoped that the new Supreme Court Registry -Karachi building was going to be one of the most classical buildings in Karachi. He said that the building would had six court rooms, ample space for bar and Advocate General's office etc.Earlier, CJP unveiled the plaque to perform groundbreaking of the Supreme Court Registry -Karachi. Besides others Judges and lawyers were also attended the ceremony.
With additional input by APP
Published in The Express Tribune, May 18th, 2021.