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February 28, 2020

Interim stay extended in ghee prices case

Lahore

February 28, 2020

LAHORE:The Lahore High Court on Friday expressed displeasure over indecent attitude of secretary industries and turned down his oral apology, asking him to furnish a written one.

A full bench headed by Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi was hearing a set of petitions by vegetable/vanaspati ghee manufacturers challenging powers of the government to fix price. The court had issued notices to the attorney general of Pakistan and the AGP for their assistance on behalf of the federal and provincial governments.

As the bench resumed hearing Thursday, secretary industries turned up and told the court that his ministry had filed its 59-page reply. Justice Naqvi told him that it should have been furnished couple of days before the hearing as such a voluminous reply required time to go through.

Secretary Industries instead of admitting his mistake asked the court to distribute copies of the reply among the lawyers of other parties to the case. Justice Naqvi snubbed him for showing indecent attitude and said he did not have the manners to appear and address the court. Realising his mistake, secretary sought unconditional apology from the court, which was declined and he was asked to file a written pardon.

The court extended interim stay already granted to the petitioners by suspending the impugned notification. The ghee producing companies approached the court after director general of industries, prices, weights & measures had on November 9, 2019, issued a notification under section 6 of the Price Control and Prevention of Profiteering and Hoarding Act, 1977.

The petitioners through counsel argued that the impugned Act was ultra vires the Constitution as it was enacted by the parliament without legislative competence. They said the Act also violated Article 9 and 10-A of the Constitution.

They said the government was forcing them to sell their product on price not more than Rs180 per kg infringing their fundamental right to life protected under Article 3 of the Constitution. The court adjourned hearing until March 06 and extended interim stay already granted to the petitioners by suspending the impugned notification.

surgical mask: A petition has been filed in the Lahore High Court (LHC) against skyrocketing prices of surgical mask in the wake of finding two coronavirus cases in Pakistan.

The petitioner says drug regulatory authority of Pakistan (DRAP) has been playing the role of a silent spectator as it took no measure to control the price, forcing people to buy it at higher price.