Tuesday March 28, 2023

New houses must have two trees each: LHC

May 22, 2019

LAHORE: In order to curb environmental pollution, Lahore High Court has declared it mandatory to plant at least two trees for each person who is building a house in any housing scheme.

Hearing a petition related to controlling environmental pollution in the country, Justice Jawad Hasan of LHC directed that every citizen building a house in any housing society, must plant at least two trees. This is the matter of country’s future, he said. In case of non-compliance, the no-objection certificate of such housing societies will be cancelled, the justice remarked. —NNI

Our correspondent adds: The Punjab environmental protection agency Thursday submitted a report to Lahore High Court, stating that 19 brick-kilns and 489 metal melting units have been sealed during last five months and 57 FIRs have been registered against the culprits. Moreover, 25,313 trees have been planted in the past five months to implement the clean and green Pakistan initiative.

The court was hearing a petition filed by a lungs cancer patient Sheikh Noman Salahuddin through Sheraz Zaka advocate. The counsel submitted that Lahore, Faisalabad and Gujranwala were becoming the most polluted cities in the world as industrial units were being established in residential areas and Punjab environmental protection agency had failed to take action against illegal industrial units.

After going through the report, Justice Jawad Hassan directed the secretary environment and DG Punjab environmental protection agency to take action against the industrial units established illegally in residential areas of Lahore and Gujranwala and submit a report by May 30. The judge observed that the state had failed to implement its clean and green Pakistan initiative and enforce fundamental rights of citizens against the environmental hazards. The court will resume hearing on May 30.

tax amnesty scheme: The Lahore High Court Tuesday sought replies from federal government and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on a petition challenging the legality of Tax Amnesty Scheme-2019. A citizen namely Waheed Butt challenged the scheme meant for declaration of ill-gotten assets for being a relief to looters of public money.

The petitioner’s counsel argued that the amnesty scheme could not be launched unless approved by the parliament. He said the impugned scheme was only approved by the federal cabinet only, which was against the Constitution. However, he stated that the Constitution had no provision for announcing such schemes to benefit tax evaders. He asked the court to declare the scheme unconstitutional. The court issued notice to the respondents and sought their replies by June 28.