Over 2000 Afghan Transit Cases: SHC orders Customs, NLC to file statements

KARACHI: An appellate bench of High Court of Sindh (SHC) comprising Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Muhammad Humayun Khan on Wednesday ordered Custom officials of Port Muhammad Bin Qasim and National Logistic Cell (NLC) to file statements in atleast five leading petitions so that more than 2200 Special Custom Reference Applications (SCRAs) pertaining to Afghan Transit Cargo pilferage cases be decided.

At the outset of today’s hearing, the bench selected leading cases and asked the counsel for respective sides to let the hearing commence and matters be decided expeditiously.

Earlier the bench specifically asked Ghulam Hyder Shaikh advocate, counsel representing PMBQ Custom authorities for sorting out the cases and deciding them.

The court was told that if SCRA’s filed by the department are decided, the SCRA’s filed by the NLC would also be decided automatically being identical in nature.

The bench asked Ghulam Hyder Shaikh advocate to coordinate with the NLC authorities and lawyer of NLC counsel was also given a chance to identify 5 SCRA’s covering five orders challenged in these cases. The bench later fixed Nov 30 as date for next hearing of thousands of SCRA’s.

The SCRA’s are mainly against the orders of the Special Customs Appellate Tribunal which has allowed appeals by clearing and forwarding agencies holding the NLC responsible for certificate of Afghan Transit trade cargo entering Afghanistan.

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