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Tuesday Mar 06 2018

Bani Gala NOC not fake, Imran tells SC


ISLAMABAD: The no-objection certificate (NOC) issued for Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan’s Bani Gala residence was not fake and issue by the relevant authority, Imran’s counsel Babar Awan told the Supreme Court on Tuesday.

The court was hearing a case regarding encroachments and environmental degradation in Bani Gala.

Awan produced the NOC before the court and said it bears the signature of former local secretary of Bara Kahu local union, adding that the official lied that he did not issue and/or sign the document.

The apex court in the last hearing on March 1 had asked the lawyer to furnish a response on the documents related to the estate that have been submitted in the apex court.

Chief Justice Saqib Nisar remarked during today's hearing that there are claims fake documents were submitted, to which Awan once again said no fake document was submitted.

The court told the lawyer that Imran will eventually have to regularise his estate, in line with court orders to the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to regularise all properties in Bani Gala.

There will be one law governing your or anyone’s else properties in the area, Justice Nisar remarked.

The court also summoned report from the CDA on leasing of government land in the area.

Last Wednesday, Mohammad Umar, a former Bara Kahu union council official, claimed in the Supreme Court that the no-objection certificate submitted in court by Imran related to his Bana Gala residence was never issued by the authority.

The NOC is a computerised copy whereas the union council had no computer systems and work was done manually, Umar elaborated.

Umar claimed the blueprint for the residence was also fake, saying the union council had asked Imran to submit a blueprint for a go-ahead but it was never submitted.

PTI strongly rejected the claims, including in the last hearing on March 1. Imran’s counsel denied the media reports regarding the PTI chief's residence having been constructed illegally, to which the chief justice responded that the counsel should deliver this denial outside the court.

The chief justice lamented that the documents were released to the media before they were submitted in court.

Last year, the Capital Development Authority had informed the apex court that more than 100 structures in Bani Gala, including Imran's residence, are illegal.

The case is based on a suo motu notice which originated from Imran's petition seeking the court's intervention to stem illegal construction and environmental degradation in Bani Gala.


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