• Sat. Jan 28th, 2023

IHC seeks report on gifts received by PMs, presidents since 1947

The picture shows the facade of the Islamabad High Court. — IHC website/File
The picture shows the facade of the Islamabad High Court. — IHC website/File
  • Notice issued to Cabinet Division for refusal to give details of gifts. 
  • Cabinet division had refused information as it was classified. 
  • Court orders government lawyer to provide details if available. 

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court on Monday issued a notice to the Cabinet Division for refusing to provide details of the gifts received by prime ministers and presidents since creation of Pakistan, and asking it to submit a report within a month. 

IHC’s Justice Mian Gul Hassan Aurangzeb heard the petition filed by Abuzar Salman Niazi. Advocate Wasim Abid appeared in court on behalf of the petitioner. 

During the hearing, the advocate said that the petitioner asked for the details of gifts given by other countries to the presidents and the prime ministers, however, the Cabinet Division refused to provide the information as it was classified.

The Pakistan Information Commission gave an order on June 29, however, it has not been implemented even after five months, said the petitioner’s lawyer. 

“Why are you limiting yourself to the prime ministers and presidents and not including the rest of the public servants? This shows your intentions,” Justice Hassan remarked. He added that any petition like this is only related to the prime minister. 

The court addressed Deputy Attorney General Syed Ahsan Raza and ordered him to provide the information if the records are available. 

At this, Raza said that such information should be available on the website, adding that there won’t be any records before 1990. 

The court said that it might be possible that Toshakhana’s records are available. It said to provide the records if available. 

The court then adjourned the hearing and sought the report from the Cabinet Division in a month. 

LHC seeks details of gifts taken from Toshakhana since 1947

This is the second time that a court has dealt with a petition of this sort.

Earlier this month, the Lahore High Court (LHC) sought the details of gifts taken from the Toshakhana since 1947.

LHC’s Justice Asim Hafeez sought details of the Toshakhana gifts over citizen Munir Ahmed’s plea.

During the hearing, federal government’s lawyer informed the court that the sought details cannot be provided.

However, brushing the argument aside, the court directed the authorities concerned to submit the details of gifts taken from Toshakhana since 1947, by January 16.

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