LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Thursday issued notice to the federal government on a writ petition challenging the appointment of Akhtar Bulund Rana as Auditor General of Pakistan.
Justice Umar Ata Bandial issued the notice as a reply had not reached the court following an earlier order. The government has been given till November 20 to reply.
The petitioner, Advocate Rana Illamudin Ghazi, had submitted that there were serious allegations against Rana and that he should not have been appointed to such an important post. He states that the decision to appoint Rana as Auditor General was based on malafide intentions because the government ‘wanted to cover up its corruption’.
The petitioner states that under Article 62 and 63 of the Constitution, a delinquent person cannot be appointed on a Constitutional post.
He said that Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry had also written a letter to President Asif Ali Zardari on August 27, expressing concern over Rana’s appointment.
Charges in the letter included obtaining Canadian nationality without seeking prior permission from the government, travelling abroad on three Pakistani passports and two national identification cards and the sexual assault of subordinate woman during service.
The letter also stated that Rana had never qualified for a Grade 22 promotion. Rana had also falsely accused former Auditor General Tanveer Agha before the supreme judicial council.
President Zardari had rejected the chief justice’s concerns and said that his dual nationality was no impediment in his appointment and also that he had been exonerated from sexual harassment allegation.
The petitioner has requested the court to set aside Rana’s appointment by declaring it unconstitutional and illegal.
Rana was appointed as the new auditor general by President Zardari on August 23 on Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s advice and the chief justice was approached for administering oath to the new auditor general. He had taken oath on August 27, 2011.
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