LHC issues notices on contempt plea against parking plaza on Doongi Ground


LAHORE: Justice Ayesha A Malik of the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday issued notices on a contempt petition against the construction of a parking plaza on Doongi Ground in Gulberg despite the fact that an LHC full bench had ordered the restoration of the playground by declaring its earlier conversion into a theatre facility illegal in 2011. 
The court sought replies from the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) director general and other respondents by May 8.Ahmad Imran Ghazi, through his counsel Azhar Siddique, petitioned that the LHC full bench had declared illegal the conversion of Doongi Ground into IMAX Theatre and other allied facilities on September 16, 2011. He submitted that the provincial government and its different departments had not complied with the orders of the full bench and that they had started constructions on the ground in stark violation of the orders. He submitted that a legal notice was also sent to the respondents on October 4, 2012, to refrain from carrying out the said constructions in disregard to the LHC verdict. 
He submitted that the respondents paid no heed either to the judgment or to the notice on which a contempt petition was also filed which is still pending before this court.
He submitted that during the pendency of the contempt petition, the respondents had expedited work on the construction of a parking plaza at the site. He said that the respondents have neither considered any feasibility of the parking plaza nor obtained a no objection certificate from the Environment Department. 
He submitted that the verdict was very clear in its terms whereby it stood proved that a park was converted into a theatre for other extraneous purposes and as such violated the Disposal of Land by Development Authorities (Regulation) Act, 1988, hence the relevant authorities were under obligation to take action in this regard which had not been taken so far.
He said that no requisite consent, permission, sanction or approval from any authority concerned had been taken so far. Even no amendment had been made to the scheme as required under the Lahore Development Authority Act, 1975, so the entire building had to be removed and residents of the area and the people of the city be allowed to use this land as a playground, he added. 
He requested the court to take action against those persons, who had wasted the public exchequer in this project. He also requested the court to initiate contempt proceedings against LDA high-ups and other responsible officers for disobeying the court orders. 

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