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The land was allotted to the army by the former rulers: Punjab Govt

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The land was allotted to the army by the former rulers: Punjab Govt

The Lahore High Court has temporarily stayed the allotment of more than 45,000 acres of land in Punjab province to the Pakistan Army for corporate farming.

The court temporarily suspended the provincial government’s notification, which allowed the army to give agricultural land for commercial purposes.

Punjab Information Minister Aamir Mir said in a conversation with Independent Urdu that the allotment of land to the army was approved by the previous government. ‘We have only implemented this decision. Now, because the case is in the court, the Punjab government is bound to implement the court orders.

Amir Mir said that the Provincial Advocate General will present the response of the Punjab government to the court on the court notice.

Lahore High Court judge Justice Abid Hussain Chatta issued a written decision in this regard on Friday, while the notification was suspended two days ago through an oral order.

The court has said in the judgment that the petitioner argued that the governor of Punjab has no legal right to lease the government land, because at present a caretaker government is established in the province.

Governor Punjab had issued a notification to lease agricultural land to the army for commercial purposes after approval of the government.

Talking to Independent Urdu, the petitioner’s lawyer Rafi Alam said that the petition has been filed in public interest.

According to Rafi Alam, he has based his application on two constitutional points.

“On the one hand, caretaker government is established only to conduct elections and run day-to-day affairs. Second: Under the Constitution of Pakistan, the army can protect the borders and support the government.

“Therefore, the notification of the land allotted to the army by the caretaker government of Punjab is illegal and should be suspended.”

In his arguments, the petitioner raised the question that how can the government which has been formed for only three months take this decision?

The petitioner’s counsel argued that the Director General of the Army for Strategic Projects had written to the Punjab government to acquire government land for business purposes, which is against the constitutional role of the Army.

Arguments said that allotting agricultural land to the army is a violation of the rights of ordinary citizens.

In the court order, it is said that all the points of the petitioner’s lawyer need attention, therefore, a notice is issued to the parties to submit point-by-point written responses to the petition in the court by May 9.

The caretaker government of Punjab province issued a notification in February allotting agricultural land to the army for modern farming in the Punjab cities of Bakhar, Khushab and Sahiwal.

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