‘Summon ministers over contradictory statements on Davis immunity’ | Pakistan Today

‘Summon ministers over contradictory statements on Davis immunity’

LAHORE – A writ petition has been moved in the Lahore High Court to summon former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and PPP information secretary Fouzia Wahab for giving contradictory statements on the issue of diplomatic immunity to double murder accused American national Raymond Davis.
The court has ordered the accused to divulge material before the court to substantiate their respective statements. Advocate Muhammad Azhar Siddique filed a petition stating Shah Mahmood Qureshi publicly claimed Davis did not enjoy diplomatic immunity but Fouzia Wahab contradicted him claiming Davis had complete immunity.
The petition claims the American ambassador and counselor had categorically stated that the individual apprehended by Punjab Police as Raymond Davis was not named Raymond Davis and his real name had not been disclosed yet. The petition argued a fake individual had no right to claim diplomatic immunity under the Vienna Convention or another law.
Advocate Azhar pleaded that Raymond Davis not be released from custody or handed over to the US government until courts decide on the status of his ‘diplomatic immunity’. He requested the court to pass an order to try Davis for the deliberate murder of two Pakistanis and sentence him under Pakistani law. He expressed apprehension that the foreign office record was being illegally removed by the Interior Ministry to tamper Davis’s record.
He prayed that the court to send the record back to the Foreign Office whereas copies of the record should be submitted to the court. He pleaded the court to set up a judicial inquiry into the tampering, manipulating and forgering of the Foreign Ministry’s immunity record.
Demolishing Petrol Pumps: Justice Azmat Saeed of the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday extended the stay order till February 25 against demolition or sealing off of 18 petrol pumps and CNG stations located in the provincial metropolis as LDA sought time to file written reply. Pakistan State Oil and different companies have moved petitions against cancellation of their lease agreement, sealing and demolition of the structures.
They pleaded that they had established petrol pumps and CNG stations on the land owned by LDA and are running them. They pointed out that according to law, lease granted by LDA is to be extended periodically for three years for a total of 33 years. They argued that in view of section 4 of Disposal of Land by Development Authorities (Regulations Act of 1998) such right of extension vests in favour of the lessee.
They argued that period of extensions perceived in the said law had admittedly not been exhausted, therefore, the lease cannot be terminated, the site cannot be auctioned as threatened or the same cannot be sealed or demolished. They have prayed to the court to restrain LDA from demolishing, auctioning or sealing their sites. Counsel for LDA argued that rent being paid by petitioners is not in line with market rate. Hence petitioner companies have no right to retain possession as original lease and the extended periods have expired.
After hearing the arguments, the court had admitted the writ petitions for regular hearing on December 24. The court had declined the request to stop auction but restrained LDA from sealing or demolishing petrol pumps and CNG stations. On Tuesday the court extended the stay order.



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