Sunday June 26, 2022

SHC issues contempt of court notice to former chief secretary

May 22, 2022

The Sindh High Court (SHC) has issued contempt of court notices to the last chief secretary and the irrigation secretary for framing a charge against them over violation of court orders in a compensation case.

The high court had on February 3 directed then chief secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah and Irrigation Secretary Suhail Ahmed Qureshi to pay an outstanding amount of Rs585,114,921 to contractors of the rehabilitation project for the Jamrao Canal.

Shah and Qureshi filed their replies to the show-cause notice and raised objection to the court orders without tendering any apology for non-compliance of the court order. The high court observed that the Sindh government had filed a review application against the court order, which was dismissed on April 28.

A division bench of the SHC headed by Justice Mohammad Karim Khan Agha observed that the order of the court had still not been obeyed by any of the alleged contemnors with regard to the payment to the contractors for work done in the rehabilitation project.

The high court rejected the reply of the former chief secretary and irrigation secretary as not only they had failed to tender any apology to the court but on account of their inaction, they both prima facie violated the court order and had rendered themselves liable to be proceeded against contempt of court.

The SHC also observed that the present chief secretary, Sohail Rajput, was also directed to comply with the court order but he failed to do so. The high court issued a notice to the incumbent chief secretary seeking a reply to why a show-cause notice not be issued against him for disobeying the court order.

The bench directed the SHC office to issue an intimation notice to the former chief secretary and irrigation secretary who shall appear before court on May 27 along with the Sindh advocate general in order for a charge to be framed on them for violating the court orders.