Thursday May 31 2018

SC orders govt officials to return vehicles possessed without merit by midnight


LAHORE: The Supreme Court has ordered government officials and departments to return the vehicles in their possession without merit, while additional ones used by Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Law Minister Rana Sanaullah would be taken back as soon as the Cabinet dissolves tonight.

The directives were issued during Thursday's hearing on a suo motu case by a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar at Supreme Court's Lahore registry.

During the hearing, Additional Attorney General Nayyar Abbas presented the details of vehicles in possession of government institutes and members of the Cabinet. According to the report, 105 vehicles were being used by the Cabinet members and government officials.

The report stated that Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl chief Maulana Fazl-ur-Rehman had one Land Cruiser and three double-cabin vehicles, federal ministers Abid Sher Ali and Kamran Michael had Mercedes-Benz, whereas Attorney General Ashtar Ausaf had a bullet-proof vehicle.

Although no officer or minister has the right to possess a vehicle of over 1,800 CC, the vehicles stated in the report have an engine size above the given margin, the additional attorney general said.

To this, the chief justice asked under what authority the prime minister approved the purchase of such high-cost vehicles. He remarked that the public does not pay taxes for luxuries of ministers.

Therefore, Justice Nisar ordered that vehicles possessed without merit should be impounded at 12am. He also observed that action would be taken against board of directors and they will be made to pay for vehicles acquired illegally.

Justice Nisar observed that matter of vehicles possessed without merit could also be sent to National Accountability Bureau.