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Excise duty case: How can SHC set aside SC decision, asks CJP

During hearing when court expressed astonishment, Khalid Javed told court that verdict delivered by SC was unconstitutional

By Our Correspondent
December 07, 2023
The Supreme Court (SC) building in Islamabad. — AFP/File
The Supreme Court (SC) building in Islamabad. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday, while expressing concerns over the decision of Sindh High Court (SHC) regarding the Excise Duty Act 2005, questioned how the high court could set aside the decision of the apex court.

A three-member bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa, sought written formulations from all the parties concerned on the matter of excise duty and tax refund in three weeks.

During the hearing, Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa observed when the apex court in the year 2011 had declared Section 3-A of the Excise Duty Act 2005 as valid, then how the Sindh High Court in 2013 could declare unconstitutional the notification issued under the said Act.

During the hearing when the court expressed astonishment over the decision of the Sindh High Court, Khalid Javed told the court that the verdict delivered by the Supreme Court was unconstitutional.

The Chief Justice asked the counsel as to whether he wanted to file a review of the judgment to which the counsel pleaded for an adjournment.

The CJP, however, observed that they had rejected the plea for adjournment four times and warned that if an adjournment was sought for the fifth time, a fine would be imposed on him.

Khalid Javed advocate sought an adjournment in the matter adding that Barrister Farogh Naseem has filed an application seeking an adjournment.

The Chief Justice, however, observed that the application seeking adjournment is not fair adding that Farogh Naseem has stated that he was ill, hence the court should adjourn the matter for one and a half months.

Justice Athar Minallah observed that the federal government had imposed taxes under the Customs law adding that they were also endorsed by the Supreme Court in different judgments.

“Whether we should review all those decisions,” Justice Minallah questioned and expressed his astonishment as to why the Excise Department did not cite those judgments of the apex court in its defence.