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ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has directed the Ministry of Law and Justice to serve notices on 10 judicial members (BS-21) working on contract basis in Appellate Tribunal Inland Revenue (ATIR) in a constitutional petition, wherein, their appointments have been challenged.

The petition has been filed by an Advocate High Court requesting the IHC to declare the appointment of 10 Judicial Members in the ATIR as illegal and unconstitutional.

When contacted, one of the counsels of the petitioner, Waheed Shahzad Butt advocate told this correspondent that the petition has named as respondents the prime minister of Pakistan, Ministry of Law, Federal Public Service Commission, 10 Judicial Members in ATIR as well as the Federal Government through Establishment Division.

The IHC has issued notice to the respondents after hearing the arguments and fixed the hearing for November 8, 2022.

The petitioner requested the IHC to order the cancellation of the notification dated 02.06.2021 regarding the appointment of 10 Judicial Members.

Counsel Butt pleaded that the contractual appointments in BS-21 of judicial officers cannot be made without advertisement and information to the public at large, hence, violative of Article 5, 18, 25, and preamble of the Constitution of Pakistan and thus, illegal and void ab-initio.

The IHC’s order states, “At the very outset, learned counsel for respondent No”5 (Sardar M Ajaz Khan) pointed out that officers mentioned in the memorandum of parties at Serial No 5 (i to x) were not issued notices as noted in the earlier order. Office is directed to issue notice to respondents No5 (i to x) through the Ministry of Law and Justice.”

The office shall also ensure compliance of the order and file a report regarding the service. The case has been relisted on Nov 8, 2022, the IHC ordered.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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