Ownership of Tejori Heights site given to a lawyer by SC. The Supreme Court observed on Thursday that the lawyer for the developers of Tejori Heights, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, appears to have been unable to show the title of the property on which a multi-story building is being constructed.
However, as the three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed was about to make a decision, the builders’ counsel requested additional time to solicit instructions from his clients. The hearing was rescheduled for the following day.
Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan and Justice Qazi Mohammad Amin Ahmed round out the bench.
The under-construction structure is located near the Karachi Circular Railway’s abandoned Gilani station. Pakistan Railways asserts that the subject land was assigned to the KCR and was infringed upon by the developers.
Senior lawyer Raza Rabbani, representing the builders, made additional remarks, as he had done on October 25 and 26. He was, however, unable to provide a suitable response to various queries posed by the bench to establish the land’s ownership.
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The CPJ noticed that the construction on the land looked to be illegal based on the falsified documents shown in court and noted that they could obtain any copy from the board of revenue for a bribe.
He requested that the lawyer obtain instructions from his clients regarding whether they intended to demolish the structure or whether the court should issue an order in this regard.
Justice Ahsan inquired of the lawyer whether a power of attorney included only survey 190 and not survey 188 or any other observed or Na-class (un-surveyed land).
Additionally, he stated that they should have executed a new sale deed for the new/substitute property because the title could not be transferred by correcting a general power of attorney or sale agreement.
In response to another argument made by the council, Justice Ahsan stated that if the property in question was sold in 2015, why did they wait five years to rectify it. He emphasised that the rectification document could not be construed as a selling deed.
The lawyer also drew the bench’s attention to a 1989 judgement about the land in question issued by a senior civil judge, but Justice Ahsan remarked on how an adverse possession decree and an ex-party decree could be made regarding state territory. Ownership of Tejori Heights site given to a lawyer by SC.
When Mr Rabbani attempted to summarise the subject land granted by the then-chief minister, the CJP stated that the CM had nothing to do with it because he lacked the authority to give government land to any private person.
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The bench remarked that until cancelled the sale document for survey 190, no allotment could be made in survey 188.
The attorney contended that survey 190 contained a typographical error. The CJP, however, disagreed, stating that survey 190′ was written throughout the materials.
The lawyer repeatedly urged the bench to remand the case to the Sindh High Court, where Pakistan Railways has filed a suit about the land in question.
The apex court had ordered an immediate halt to work on Tejori Heights in December last year, preventing the developers from establishing a third-party interest.
It had stated that based on documents, Tejori Heights had no prima facie right to the land in question and asked the Karachi commissioner to take control of the site until further order.
The PR’s counsel stated that the land belonged to the railways and that the structure was being built illegally using false paperwork.
Later, the builders petitioned the apex court for a rehearing of their earlier ruling. Mr Rabbani, however, notified the bench on Oct 25 that he was withdrawing the review motion and was willing to argue as an intervener in another application filed by the railroads in the apex court over the subject area. The bench granted him the opportunity to elaborate on his arguments. Ownership of Tejori Heights site given to a lawyer by SC.
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