The Supreme Court has rejected the exemption plea of Malik Riaz’s son Ali Riaz Malik for appearing in the next hearing of the Bahria Town implementation case.
A three-member SC bench headed by Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed was hearing the case about the implementation of the apex court’s verdict. The bench also included Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Munib Akhtar.
The counsel of Ali Riaz, Advocate Azhar Siddique, informed the court that his client had received serious death threats and therefore, he was unable to appear in the next hearing.
He said, ever since the news of Karachi land’s settlement case for Rs. 460 billion has surfaced, his client was facing more security threats.
He requested the court to let Ali Riaz submit an affidavit in the London or Dubai embassy.
However, the bench rejected the exemption plea from owners of the Bahria Town.
“We will not hear further arguments on this matter, and will implement our judgment if the accused didn’t appear in the next hearing,” Justice Azmat Saeed said.
Over the course of the hearing, the court also issued notices to different government departments including Punjab government, provincial forest department, National Accountability Bureau, Environmental Protection Agency and Rawalpindi commissioner in Bahria Town implementation case. The court has ordered the representatives of the said departments to ensure their presence on May 14.
Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan – the counsel of Bahria Town – argued before the top court that many government projects such as Media Town, Pakistan Town, and Judicial Town were constructed on Rawalpindi’s forest land.
To this, the apex court ordered Punjab government to submit a report about the illegal occupation of forest land.
Later, the court directed the Punjab government to submit a report about the occupation of forest land.
Note that the Supreme Court had accepted Bahria Town’s settlement offer of Rs. 460 billion for its projects in Karachi.
The real estate tycoon has also offered to pay Rs. 22 billion for the 5,472 Kanal in Rawalpindi and Rs. 23 billion for the 4,542 Kanal in Murree.
The court is yet to give its judgment on the offer. The case was adjourned until May 14.
Note: Our previous title for the story was inaccurate and has been updated. We apologize for the mistake.