Supreme Court orders opening of Monal Restaurant

ISLAMABAD, Mar 07 (Alliance News): The Supreme Court suspended the summary judgment of the Islamabad High Court regarding the sealing of Monal Restaurant and ordered to reopen the restaurant.

A three-member bench headed by Justice Ejaz-ul-Haq heard the petition filed by restaurant lawyer Makhdoom Ali Khan against the sealing of Monal Restaurant.

The restaurant’s lawyer informed the court that a certified copy of the Islamabad High Court’s brief order was not available and no detailed decision was available. However, the restaurant was sealed.

The lawyer said that the appeal was fixed for hearing twice in the intra court but the case was canceled before the hearing.

The Chief Justice inquired as to how the restaurant was sealed before the written court order. If the Wildlife Board was not a party then why was it shown to be ready to seal? How many restaurants have been sold on Margalla Hills to date?

Wildlife’s lawyer told the court that notices had been issued to Gloria Janes and Lamontana.

After repeatedly interfering during the hearing, the Supreme Court reprimanded Chairperson Wildlife Board Rana Ahmed and removed her from the rostrum.

The court remarked that in principle there is no order of the Islamabad High Court, oral order has no constitutional and legal status, is it not the monarchy that the emperor issued the decree and it was implemented before it was signed.

The apex court said that the High Court did not issue an order to seal the Monal restaurant, it was sealed by the magistrate without notice while the other restaurants adjacent to the Monal restaurant were given notice before sealing.

The Supreme Court suspended the unsigned summary order of the Islamabad High Court and ordered to de-seal the restaurant and adjourned the hearing indefinitely.

Earlier a months ago, It may be recalled that the Islamabad High Court had on January 11 ordered the sealing of Monal Restaurant on the same day and the CDA to take over the Navy Golf Club.

Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Athar Minallah had issued the order while hearing cases against illegal constructions and encroachments in Margalla Hills National Park and said that National Park Area is a protected area, there should be no activity in it. No one can cut grass in the National Park area.

The Chief Justice had inquired as to who was claiming 8,000 acres of land in Monal. This court has to protect the National Park, that 8,000 acres of land is now part of the National Park Area, which will now be managed under the 1979 Act.

The apex court had ordered to seal Monal’s lease if it has expired, and directed the Environmental Protection Agency to submit a report estimating the damage caused by the construction.

The Islamabad High Court had also ruled that the demarcation of Margalla Hills National Park should be completed soon and the claim of 8,000 acres of land of Military Directorate Farms was also illegal and 8,000 acres of land should be considered as part of Margalla National Park.

Later, Makhdoom Ali Khan, a lawyer for Monal Restaurant, had appealed to the Supreme Court to suspend the decision of the Islamabad High Court.

A three-member bench headed by Justice Ejaz-ul-Haq and comprising Justice Muneeb Akhtar and Justice Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi was constituted to hear the case.


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