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CJP warns of invoking Article 6 against dam critics

LAHORE: Chief Justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar on Saturday warned that those who try to hinder the construction of Diamer-Bhasha and Mohmand dams can be tried for treason under Article 6 of the Constitution.

During the suo motu hearing of a case involving a mineral water company, Justice Nisar said he had carefully checked the constitutional clause to determine its parameters.

He added that water in Pakistan is currently worth more than gold.

“These companies buy water at Rs25 per litre from the govt. and sell it at Rs50 per litre. The poor are forced to drink unhygienic and contaminated water,” he added.

Summoning the chief executive of the company, the CJP said that water theft of any kind will not be tolerated and mineral water companies must set prices after consulting the government

On Friday, the CJP took suo motu notice over the exploitation of water resources by mineral water companies operating in the country and sought data regarding their water usage.

The orders were issued during the Katas Raj case hearing. All the data was to be submitted by Friday night.

He stressed the importance of water and said companies acquire water free of cost through installed turbines and then sell it at exorbitant prices.

On September 13, the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) received pre-qualification bids for the Diamer-Bhasha dam – one of the two water reservoirs which the SC as well as the newly-elected government have expressed resolve to build in view of the grueling water crisis.

According to a statement issued to media, the authority received these bids for construction of the main dam and appurtenant structures of the project from as many as five joint ventures of foreign and local firms through international competitive bidding.

On September 12, the CJP gave a ‘last warning’ to those who were criticising the court for collecting donations for the construction of dams.

“No matter how powerful anybody is, we will take them to the task,” says the chief justice while hearing the Dadocha Dam construction case.

Without referring PPP senior leader Khursheed Shah, the chief justice said one political leader had said the SC should form a political party. It is to be noted that Shah had recommended the chief justice to form a political party after his retirement.

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