Govt asked to  Submit reply in LG Polls Matter: SHC

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The Sindh High Court resumed proceeding of a petition, filed by Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) Karachi, seeking devolution of powers to the local government under Article 140-A of the constitution, and reprimanded the Sindh government over its failure to submit reply in the case, here on Tuesday.

The SHC judge told the additional attorney general and additional secretary local bodies to submit the reply by the next hearing of the case or face contempt of court proceedings. The court fixed January 12, 2023 for the next hearing. The judge remarked that the continuous delay on part of the Sindh government shows that the respondent wants to make the case lengthy.

Later, JI Karachi chief Engr Hafiz Naeemur Rehman held a presser outside the court and said that the PPP government in Sindh wants to enjoy the monetary and administrative powers of the local government in Karachi. He said that the court also chided the Sindh government over delaying the issue and warned it of contempt of court proceedings if the PPP government does not take the matter seriously.

He further said that the JI has asked the honorable court to play its due role in case the Sindh government was reluctant to devolve powers to grass root level. He expressed his hope that the court would decide the matter on the next hearing. He said that the holding the local government elections and devolution of powers are the need of hour in order to resolve it’s burning issues.

Hafiz Naeem recalled that the JI has staged a 29-day long sit-in outside the Sindh Assembly building for devolution of powers to the local government setup whereas the protest was culminated after the Sindh government accepted the demands. He continued that letter the Sindh government changed its course after joining hands with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement.

Talking about the dual standards demonstrated by the PPP government in Sindh, he said that the regime receives NFC award to enjoy the province’s share in the national resources but doesn’t grants the PFC awards in contrast to the spirit of the 18th constitutional amendment.

He said that the PPP’s behavior towards Karachi and Karachiites visibly depicts enmity and deep desire to usurp the rights of Karachiites.

He said that Karachiites were kept deprived of basic facilities, including water and electricity even in the winter season. Similarly, the mega city — home to some 30 million individuals — lacks a proper transportation system, set aside the mass transit system.

The JI leader also lambasted the Muttahida Qaumi Movement for siding the PPP while compromising the rights of Karachi and Karachiites just for the sake of share in corruption money, perks and privileges and some ministeries as well as a few key posts. In this backdrop, he said, the JI has become the only hope for a bright future of the megalopolis — once known as the city of lights and now a hub of problems.