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Peshawar BRT: SC bars FIA from probing project for third time

Top Story

June 4, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday ruled for examining the transparency of Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit Project (BRT) as well as the process whereby the contract for the construction of this mega project was awarded. A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Justice Umar Ata Bandial heard the appeals filed by the government of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa as well as Peshawar Development Authority (PDA), challenging the order, passed by Peshawar High Court (PHC) directing the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to conduct an inquiry into different aspects of the BRT Project.

The court maintained its interim order for third time, halting the investigation being conducted by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in the alleged irregularities in the instant project.

Earlier, on February 3, the court passed an interim order, restraining the FIA form conducting investigation and later on March 17, the court maintained its interim order.

The court again extended its interim order after the KP government had sought adjournment in the matter which the court accepted and adjourned the hearing.

KP Additional Advocate General submitted before the court that as the lead counsel is not present hence the case be adjourned adding that in pursuance of the court’s last order, details pertaining to the project has been filed before the court besides taking steps in lieu of the complaints lodged by the petitioners.

Justice Umar Ata Bandial, however, observed that they don’t want to keep the appeal under stay for long time.

The court observed that it would look into many aspects of the project in detail and will examine its transparency as well as the process under which contract for its construction was awarded.

Justice Umar Ata Bandial observed that they will also examine as to whether there is any conflict of interest in the project or not adding that the court will also look into if the provincial government has not spent billions of rupees on incomplete projects.

Justice Bandial questioned as to whether the project was launched without making proper preparation adding that frequent changes were made in the design of the project on public money. The judge said that the court will also examine the delay in the completion of the project as well. Meanwhile, the court adjourned the hearing for date-in-office