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December 13, 2019

Federal govt tells Supreme Court of readiness to run NICVD, JPMC and NICH


December 13, 2019

KARACHI: The federal government has expressed its willingness to the Supreme Court of Pakistan to take over administrative and financial control of three major hospitals in Karachi including NICVD, JPMC and NICH and sought six weeks time for preparing modalities’, officials told The News on Thursday.

“Today the federal government through its additional attorney general and officials of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination expressed their willingness to take over the administrative and financial control of three Karachi hospitals including NICVD, JPMC and NICH” an official of the NHSRC told The News.

He said the federal government has sought at least six weeks time from the apex court to prepare a working paper on the modalities to implement the ruling of Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The official said a full bench of Supreme Court of Pakistan had summoned the Federal Health Secretary, Federal Advisor Health Dr. Zafar Mirza, Attorney General of Pakistan and the counsel of both the Sindh government and the NICVD regarding implementation of its order of January 17, 2019.

The official said Prime Minister Imran Khan wanted Sindh government to run these facilities due to financial constraints but added that the federal cabinet reviewed its earlier decision and decided that as per apex court’s orders, they should run these facilities instead. The court allowed the federal government to come up with a solution in the first week of March 2020.

Meanwhile, the counsel for the Sindh government Farooq H. Naek and Raza Rabbani, the counsel for NICVD also sought time for filing an amended review petition before the Supreme Court, arguing that there were some new points in the detailed judgment of the court and based on them.

The Supreme Court in its detailed judgment on November 2019 had ruled that the transfer of three major Karachi hospitals after the devolution of health sector under the 18th Amendment from the federal government to the province was ‘unconstitutional’.

The detailed judgement, authored by Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan, said these institutions did not fall within the concurrent legislative list as required by Clause (8), read with Clause (9) of Article 270AA of the Constitution.

However, the federal government, despite the Supreme Court’s orders was not willing to assume control of these health facilities and had asked the Sindh government to continue running them.

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