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September 14, 2018

SC orders Sharifs’ sugar mills relocation from S Punjab

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September 14, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday ordered the repatriation of sugar mills, owned by Sharif family from Southern Punjab to its previous places as well as shifting of its machinery within two months.

A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar and comprising Justice Umer Ata Bandial and Justice Ijazul Ahsen dismissed appeals of Sharif family as well as other petitioners, challenging the verdict of Lahore High Court (LHC), ordering relocation of the sugar mills as illegal.

“Reasons to be recorded later on as we do not find any substance in the instance appeals and have dismissed it instantly”, Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar announced in a short order.

The court ruled that the petitioners are prevented to operate their mills after two months and during the period they may remove the equipment and then shift it to other place. The court however, ruled that the buildings of the said sugar mills would remain intact and could be utilised for other industrial purposes.

The management of Itefaq, Haseeb Waqas and Chaudhry sugar mills, owned by Sharif family had challenged in the Supreme Court, verdict of the learned LHC, declaring relocation of sugar mills to Southern Punjab as illegal and had directed its management to repatriate the mills to their previous locations.

Last year, a three-member LHC bench, headed by then Chief Justice Mansoor Ali Shah, had announced the verdict on a petition filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader and JDW Sugar Mills owner Jehangir Tareen.

The bench then declared the relocation of the Sharif family’s mills in South Punjab ‘illegal’ and ordered all the mills – namely Ittefaq Sugar Mills, Haseeb Waqas Sugar Mills and Chaudhry Sugar Mills – be repatriated to their previous locations.

Jehangir Tareen, the petitioner had pleaded before the learned LHC that the mills were shifted to new locations despite a ban that had been previously imposed on relocating the sugar mills, violating the government’s own policy.

On Thursday, Malik Qayyum, Makhdom Ali Khan and Ali Sabtain Fazli, counsels for Itefaq, Chaudhry Sugar Mills and Haseeb Waqas Sugars Mills of Sharif family while Barrister Aitzaz Ahsen, counsels for JDW Sugar Mills owned by Jehangir Tareen appeared before the court and presented their arguments.

The court after hearing the arguments, dismissed the instant petitions and directed repatriation of Sharif sugar mills within two months from Southern Punjab to its previous places.

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