ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) has summoned Punjab Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE) Director General (DG) Hussain Asghar in-person for allegedly harassing Lahore Mayor Col (r) Mubashar Javed, and Lahore Development Authority (LDA) DG.
A three-judge bench headed by Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed also issued a notice to the attorney general in a case seeking restraining orders against replacing the existing local government system with a new one.
The petitioner, Lahore mayor, made the Punjab government, LDA, Local Government and Community Development (LG&CD) secretary and Punjab chief secretary as the respondents in the case.
During the course of proceedings, counsels for LDA DG and Lahore mayor alleged that the ACE DG was “harassing them and their employees by summoning them in irrelevant cases”.
They added that ACE had registered “fake cases” against their employees for refusing to do things the anti-corruption establishment had “forced them to do”.
Mubashar’s counsel told the court that ACE had also recently sealed 28 marriage halls without informing his client.
Justice Azmat observed that if the allegations were true, the anti-corruption wing was “crossing its limit” and summoned Punjab ACE DG in person after a week.
The mayor’s counsel also requested the court that the LDA may be restrained from allegedly encroaching upon or interfering with the functions, powers, authority and responsibility of the MCL vested under section 87 of the PLGA 2013.
He requested that the LG&CD secretary may be restrained from allegedly illegally and unconstitutionally exercising the power and authority of the provincial government under PLGA 2013 and without prior approval of the provincial cabinet.
He prayed the SC to empower the local body government and pass the orders to refrain LDA from interfering in the matters of the mayor and local government in the province.
Meanwhile, Punjab additional advocate general apprised the bench that due to such complaints against ACE, the government also wanted to review its authority.
He informed the court that the Punjab government had prepared recommendations in connection with the powers of the local government and the bill will soon be presented in the provincial assembly.