CJP Justice Saqib Nisar grills Malik Riaz yet again

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CJP Justice Saqib Nisar grills Malik Riaz yet again

ISLAMABAD - Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar Wednesday expressed annoyance over the Sindh government for not recovering thousands of acres illegally leased forest land in Karachi. A three-judge bench headed by the CJP heard the case pertaining to alleged illegal leasing of the forest land in the province. During the course of hearing, the chief justice expressed his disappointment over the Sindh government's failure to recover the land, observing that those, who did not work, did not deserve to run the government. "Forests are very important for environment. If they do not want to work, they should leave this country. Such people are not capable of running the government," he added. The CJP said the court had issued an order on October 30 (last year), but the Sindh cabinet had not implemented it so far. "If you don’t want to work, then leave the post." The Advocate General Sindh informed the court some 70,000 acres of land was illegally leased and its lease had not been cancelled. Justice Ijazul Ahsan observed the Sindh government had itself admitted that the land was illegally allotted to influential people and asked the AG that as to why encroachments on thousands of acres of land had not been removed. Justice Ijazul Ahsan also asked as to how the Bahria Town did get hold of the forest land. In response, petitioner Qazi Athar said the property developer was given 11,000 acres of forest land in Karachi and another 4,000 acres in Nawabshah. The forest land was leased to Bahria Town, Omni Group and others in complete violation of the court's earlier orders, he added. Justice Nisar remarked,"I have never seen a government that admits that its land has been illegally occupied but still does not take any action." The CJP observed, "Malik Riaz is illegally occupying 18,000 acres of forest land." He should come to the court as he was very fond of talking on the rostrum, he added. Subsequently, the top court ordered Bahria Town's owner Malik Riaz to appear before it on January 9 at its Karachi Registry. The CJP observed that he would not allow Malik's request for adjournment. The court also ordered the parties concerned to furnish their replies by January 7. -APP