KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Monday declared the amendments in the Sindh Local Government Act-2013 (SLGA-2013) unconstitutional and illegal.
SHC division bench comprising of Justice Sajjad Ali Shah and Justice Farooq Ali Shah announced the short order, which was earlier reserved on completion of the hearings. Ten political parties, including Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F), had filed petitions challenging the local government delimitations and amendments in SLGA-2013 and prayed for declaring them void for them contradicting Article 104-A of the constitution.
The court, in its short order, declared the amendments in SLGA-2013 unconstitutional and illegal. It ruled that the Sindh Local Government (third amendment) Ordinance has been passed by the Sindh Assembly unlawfully and all amendments in the ordinance are illegal. In its decision, the court directed the Sindh government’s relevant authorities to approach the court before future amendments in the local government law.
The Muttahida Qaumi Movement welcomed the Sindh High Court decision. MQM chief Altaf Hussain, in a statement, thanked the SHC chief justice and other judges and congratulated the people over this verdict. He lauded the work of MQM barrister Farogh Naseem, who also hailed the court’s decision. “The court’s decision is a welcome one,” he said. He said sections 3, 4, 8, 13 as well as subsections 12 and 14 which had been added to section 18 of the bill were cause for disparities in the delimitation process. Therefore the court had declared these amendments unconstitutional, he added. As a result of the delimitation, some units had 10,000 people in them while others had 50,000, Naseem said.
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