Pakistan News

IHC disposes of petition against NDMA, other authorities

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday disposed of the petition seeking action against National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and the relevant authorities after they failed to rescue citizens stuck in Murree snowstorm, which claimed 23 lives.

Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan informed the Chief Justice Athar Minallah that NDMA and PDMA had timely issued the threat alert to the officials concerned.

During the previous hearing, Justice Minallah remarked that apparently NDMA has failed to perform its responsibilities. However, the AG told the court that contrary to the impression that the authority was huge organisation, it comprises about 130 officials.

He, however, told the court that the NDMA had fulfilled its responsibilities.

AG tells court officials responsible for Muree tragedy removed

The attorney general told the court that the Punjab government had taken action against the delinquent officials who failed to act accordingly.

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar had announced earlier this week that 15 officials had been removed from their positions in line with the recommendations of the Murree tragedy inquiry committee.

He said the officials who were removed from their positions and surrendered to the centre included the Rawalpindi commissioner, deputy commissioner and city police officer.

It was recommended that disciplinary action be taken against them after their suspension.

Moreover, the court was told that the Murree assistant commissioner had been suspended and disciplinary action was ordered against him.

In addition, the Rawalpindi chief traffic officer, Rawalpindi traffic DSP, Rawalpindi SE highway circle-II, Rawalpindi highway executive engineer, Murree highway mechanical sub-divisional officer, Murree divisional forest officer, Murree district emergency officers, Murree Rescue 1122 in-charge and the head of Provincial Disaster Management Authority in Punjab had been suspended.

Disciplinary action against these officials had also been ordered, AG informed the court.

During the previous hearing, it has been revealed that the high level commission National Disaster Management Commission (NDMC) headed by the Prime Minister Imran Khan never met to thrash out strategy to cope up with the natural calamities.

The last meeting of the commission was held in March 28, 2018 when Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz was in power at the centre and Punjab.

Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2022

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