SC issues notices in Balochistan govt’s appeal

ISLAMABAD (TLTP): The Supreme Court of Pakistan has issued notices in the provincial government of Balochistan’s appeal against the Balochistan High Court (BHC) verdic on appointment of special assistants to the provincial chief minister.
A three-member bench headed by Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan conducted hearing of the Balochistan provincial government appeal. The TLTP learnt that during the hearing, Justice Mazahar Ali said that the case has become infructuous as the Balochistan government which had filed the appeal is no more in power. The additional advocate general contended that though the case pertains to the previous government, but in this case the high court had set aside the law.
The AAG said that the apex court has already passed a judgment in a similar case of the Sindh government. The AAG Balochistan informed that the BHC did not issue notice to the advocate general under Rule XXVII, which is must. He requested the Court to suspend the high court verdict. At this, Justice Ijaz questioned that when the BHC had declared the law null and void then what they suspend. However, the bench after hearing the arguments issued notices.
In April 2020, the BHC had declared the Appointments of Special Assistants to the Chief Minister Balochistan Act, 2018, null and void and the appointments of six special assistants to the Balochistan chief minister unconstitutional. The high court had also ordered the special assistants to the chief minister to return all incentives they received from the government except their salaries. In the petition, Advocate Kakar argued in the court that the act was contradictory to the law of the land and, therefore, it should be set aside.
It said that under Article 130, Subsection 11 of the Constitution of Pakistan, a chief minister can’t appoint more than five advisors. Therefore, the appointment of special assistants to CM is unconstitutional, maintained the high court. The act was passed in Nov 2018 immediately after which the provincial Chief Minister Jam Kamal appointed his close aides as special assistants.