SC orders sugar millers to pay dues by today

LAHORE: Chief Justice Saqib Nisar on Wednesday remarked that the people “eligible” to reside in government houses were kept waiting while “ineligible” people continued to enjoy perks.

Hearing a case, he questioned use of government-owned houses by the “ineligible persons”. To this, Punjab Chief Secretary Zahid Saeed informed the court that 62 persons had obtained stay orders from civil courts.

Chief Justice Nisar said persons ineligible to reside in government houses continued to live in them because they enjoyed stay orders from courts and some even rented out the government-owned properties.

The chief secretary was ordered by the chief justice to submit a list of people that were still using government houses. The court also summoned the details of all stay orders obtained from civil courts.

He added that some of them have even rented out the government houses, making money out of a property they do not own. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court directed all the sugar mills to make 100 per cent payments to the farmers against the purchase of sugarcane.

Lawyers of the mills told a three-judge bench that around 90 to 95 per cent payments had been made to the farmers and requested for more time for the payment of remaining. However, Chief Justice Nisar refused to grant more time and directed them to ensure payment to remaining farmers by Thursday (today) and submit a compliance report.

The chief justice reminded the counsel of Haseeb Waqas Sugar Mills that strict action would be taken against the management if any farmer was found standing outside the mills for his payment.

He also hailed Mian Javed Shafi, a relative of Sharifs, for paying 100 per cent payment to farmers. Mr Shafi requested the chief justice to see him in chamber to explain his position, however, the chief justice declined the request and asked him to deliver a speech with elder Sharif (Nawaz Sharif) at any public meeting.

Also on Wednesday, the chief justice constituted a committee to probe into accumulation of rainwater inside the newly-built Islamabad International Airport. The committee will comprise officials of PIA and Civil Aviation Authority which would submit report in two weeks.

The PIA CEO and the CAA DG appeared before the court and furnished a 300-page report about the construction of airport. “How constructed it in this way that first rain exposed its faults and rainwater accumulated there?” the chief justice wondered.

It was told that the CAA got it constructed, to which he remarked that is there any role of Chaudhry Munir (a close aide of Sharifs) in its construction as his name had been doing rounds.

The Supreme Court showed dissatisfaction over the report and directed the committee to file a precise and concise report. The Supreme Court also summoned details of dual-national ambassadors appointed abroad from the FIA.

A three-judge bench headed by the chief justice was hearing a case pertaining to dual nationality holders.

During the hearing, he remarked, “There are no laws regarding officers who are dual nationals.” “We want to survey those officers who hold dual nationalities,” Justice Nisar added. The chief justice directed the FIA to submit details of the dual national ambassadors and observed that he wanted the data to be passed on to the government.

“The government can use the data to draft laws against those officers who are dual nationals,” Chief Justice Nisar remarked. Meanwhile, Chief Justice Nisar on Wednesday warned all the media house owners of strict action if the salaries for the months of April and May were not paid to their workers by Thursday (today) 2pm.