Govt response sought to plea against anti-narcotics law.


PESHAWAR -- The Peshawar High Court on Wednesday issued notices to the attorney general for Pakistan and provincial advocate general seeking their response to a petition against a special anti-narcotics law enacted by the provincial government lately in the presence of a federal law, the Control of Narcotics Substance Act, 1997.

After holding a preliminary hearing into the petition of resident Asmatullah, a bench consisting of Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth and Justice Abdul Shakoor asked the attorney general and advocate general to file their respective response to the petition on the next hearing.

The petitioner requested the high court to declare the KP Control of Narcotics Substance Act (KPCNSA), 2019, unconstitutional, illegal and without jurisdiction.

He also sought the court's order declaring that law against the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

Petitioner tells court KPCNSA illegal in presence of federal law on subject

Respondents in the petition are the provincial government through chief secretary, provincial secretaries of the law and establishment departments, federal secretary of law and parliamentary affairs, and KP Assembly's secretary.

Lawyer Noor Alam Khan, who appeared for the petitioner, said the KPCNSA was passed by the assembly on Aug 27 and received the governor's assent on Sept 2.

He said the federal government had enacted a comprehensive law, Control of Narcotics Substance Act, 1997, and provided special provisions therein for eliminating narcotics.

The lawyer said the onus to prove the guilt of accused had not been placed entirely on the prosecution instead of the accused to prove his innocence as well.

He said the CNSA 1997 was a 'very rigid' special law wherein extreme punishment of death or imprisonment for life had been provided.

The lawyer also said under the CNSA, the provision of bail had been ousted, while the vehicles used in the offence...

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