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Supreme Court orders to restore local bodies in Punjab

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has restored the local government system in Punjab and termed the Local Bodies Act 2019 in contradiction with the Constitution of Pakistan.

A bench of the Supreme Court headed by CJP Justice Gulzar Ahmed, terming section three of the Local Bodies Act in contradiction of the constitution, ordered to restore the local government system in Punjab. The Punjab Local Government Act 2019 was passed by the Punjab Assembly in May 2019.

Additional Attorney-General of Punjab apprised the court that the Punjab government is ready to hold local bodies elections to ensure devolution of powers to grassroot level. He said the matter is currently under discussion in the Council of Common Interest (CCI).

The apex court was informed that the meeting of the CCI was scheduled to take place on March 24 to discuss the issue but the meeting was delayed as Prime Minister Imran Khan has contracted the coronavirus. 

Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Gulzar Ahmed asked why the local bodies government were suspended in Punjab. The applicant stated before the court the local bodies government was ended before being its tenure was due to expire in December 2021.

The court after hearing arguments from both sides, ordered to restore local bodies government by terming section three of Local Bodies Act in contradiction with the constitution of Pakistan.