LAHORE: A petition against the decision of Punjab government to lift the 12-year-old ban on Basant could not be heard at Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday.
The petition, filed by an advocate Safdar Shahin Pirzada, contended that it was “unconstitutional” to allow a leisure activity “that results in the loss of human lives”, and accused the government of lifting the ban to divert attention from public issues.
The petition further prayed to the court to disannul the government’s decision.
Earlier on Tuesday, Punjab Information and Culture Minister Fayyaz ul Hassan Chohan announced the government’s decision to lift the Basant ban and that it will be held in the second of February next year.
“A committee comprising the Punjab law minister, the provincial chief secretary, and other administrative officials, will be formed to deliberate on the modalities about how the negative aspects of the festival can be avoided and overcome”, he added.
The celebrated festival was banned by the Supreme Court in 2005 after several incidents of death from slitting of unsuspecting individuals’ throats. Negligence of safety rules and regulations also led to several deaths as a result of celebratory aerial gunfire and fatal falls from rooftops during the festival.