Mar 05, 2010

Gilgit Baltistan: Supreme Court to Rule on 2009 Order

Sample ImageA legal challenge to overturn the Gilgit-Baltistan (Empowerment and Self-Governance) Order 2009 could preface the search for a real solution, but also raises fears of centralising ever greater power to Islamabad.

Below is an article published by the Daily Times:

A petition seeking the declaration of the Gilgit-Baltistan (empowerment and self-governance) Order 2009 as ‘ultra vires’ of the constitution was filed in the Supreme Court on Thursday [4 March 2010].

The petition was filed by Shafqat Ali Khan – resident of Panyal tehsil in Ghizar district – under Article 184(3) of the constitution through Muhammad Ikram Chaudhry advocate, making the federal government the respondent in the case.

The petition contended that the 2009 order was in total negation of the rights of citizens belonging to Gilgit and Baltistan and in disregard of the constitution. “The Gilgit-Baltistan Order 2009 gives a formula that is inconsistent with the constitution, thus it is liable to be cancelled and declared ultra-vires of the constitution”, the petition said.

It said the order of 2009 is also against the SC judgement of 1999 SCMR 1379, where the apex court directed the federation to take appropriate steps to ensure the right to self-rule and independent judiciary for the Northern Areas of Pakistan.