IHC declares plots schemes for judges, bureaucrats unconstitutional
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In a landmark decision, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday declared the plots schemes launched for judges and bureaucrats in some specific housing sectors of the federal capital as unconstitutional and ordered the secretary housing to place the court’s verdict before the federal cabinet in two weeks’ time, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
“The state’s land is not for the country’s elite, but for the masses,” said Chief Justice (CJ) Athar Minallah and Justice Muhsin Akhtar Kayani while reading out the verdict reserved earlier.
The two-judge division bench heard various petitions against the allotment of plots.
The justices made this clear that judges, bureaucrats and other public office holders could not formulate policies for their own interests since their job was to serve the masses who were the real stakeholders. Hence, the Federal Government Employees’ Housing Society could not launch housing societies which are against the law as well as the constitution, said the judges.
The Federal Government Employees Housing Foundation (FGEHF) then told the court that plots were being allotted to journalists, lawyers and employees of autonomous bodies under the quota system. The IHC chief justice had then questioned: "Why aren't labourers given a plot?"
The IHC CJ had added that the federal government should have a policy that only homeless people would get a plot who could not sell the property later. Justice Minallah said that 31 to 32,000 people were waiting for the plots. He stated that there should have been a waiting list, as plots had been allotted to convicted and dismissed judges.
Reporter Ihtesham Kiani