Suo motu case: SC issues notices in rental power projects case

Ministry’s lawyer says proceedings are scaring foreign investors.

Qaiser Zulfiqar October 12, 2011


The Supreme Court on Tuesday once again issued notices to the government, the ministry of water and power and the law ministry in the Rental Power Projects (RPPs) case, even as the government counsel argued that suo motu proceedings had scared foreign investors.

A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was hearing a suo motu case on multi-million-rupee embezzlement in the award of contracts to power generation companies for rental power projects.

Khawaja Tariq Rahim, attorney for ministry of water and power, contended that foreign investors were reluctant to invest in the sector due to the ongoing proceedings of the case in the Supreme Court.

“The bench decides cases in accordance with the law,” the chief justice remarked. On previous hearings, rental power companies which had been receiving advance payments from the government had been asked to reimburse the money or face legal proceedings for their failure to generate electricity.

PML-N MNA Khawaja Asif, one of the petitioners, informed the bench that the national exchequer incurred a loss of Rs62 billion over the government’s failure to install RPPs in Nadipur and Chichu Ki Mallian.

He said the government was utilising water stored for rabi crops to overcome load-shedding. He said Faisal Saleh Hayat, the main petitioner, has lost interest in the case since his party joined the government and he was sworn in as cabinet minister. The government has crippled the economy, he added and requested the court to hear the case on a daily basis.

When Hayat’s counsel requested for an adjournment, the court fixed the case for October 26.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 12th, 2011.


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