PHC suspends handover of Peshawar roads, bus stands to civic body.

PESHAWAR -- The Peshawar High Court on Tuesday stopped the Peshawar Development Authority from taking the role of maintaining and supervising all major roads and bus stands in the provincial capital from the metropolitan and town councils until further orders.

A bench consisting of Justice Roohul Amin Khan and Justice Abdul Shakoor issued orders for it after holding a preliminary hearing into a petition, which challenged government notifications for the handing over of Peshawar roads and bus stands to the PDA.

It also admitted to full hearing the petition jointly filed by Peshawar Metropolitan mayor Zubair Ali, chairmen of five town councils Haroon Siffat, Tilla Mohammad, Faridullah Khan, Kaleemullah and Arbab Mohammad Umar, All Pakistan Local Government Workers Federation president Malik Mohammad Naveed Awan and United Municipal workers Union general secretary Syed Waqar Ali Shah.

The respondents in the petition are the provincial government through its chief secretary, and local government, law and parliamentary affairs secretaries.

Admits plea of local body heads against clipping of powers to full hearing

The petitioners requested the court to declare the impugned notifications issued on June 17, Aug 12 and Aug 16, 2022, illegal and in violation of Article 140-A of the Constitution.

They also seek the court's directives for the government to 'suitably' amend the KP Land use and Building Control Act, 2021, in accordance with Article 140-A of the Constitution. The bench fixed Nov 29 for the next hearing into the petition.

Senior lawyer Qazi Jawad Ehsanullah said through various orders and notifications several important functions and powers conferred upon different tiers of elected local governments, as established under Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Local Government Act, 2013, had been clipped off and conferred upon non-elected and non-representative bodies.

He said the elected local governments were made redundant and powerless and that too in absolute disregard of Article 140-A of the Constitution, which provided that each province should devolve local government system and devolve political, administrative and financial responsibility and authority to the elected representatives of these local governments.

The lawyer said a notification was issued by the government on June 17 declaring that different roads and their maintenance and supervision had been withdrawn from the metropolitan and tehsil local governments of Peshawar and transferred to the...

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