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2009 CLD 682

MS. SALMA IQBAL CHUNDRIGAR AND OTHER S

Vs

FEDERATION OF PAKISTAN THROUGH SEC. MINISTRY

Per Abdur Rehman Farooq Pirzada, J–

Constitution of Pakistan (1973) Arts. 199, 4, 5,9,14 & 25–

r/w Pakistan Environmental Protection Act (XXXIV of 1997)

S. 12–Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (Review of IEE and EIA)

Regulations, 2000, Arts, 3, 4 & 5–

We have taken into consideration the fact that undoubtedly the proposed project has been initiated in the interest of general public.  The population and traffic congestion are rapidly increasing every day. The  alternate roads/flyovers are necessarily required: in order to ease the congestion and heaving traffic in densely populated areas of the city.  Admittedly, the site of project is situated in a thickly populated area, facing congestion due to shops and heavy traffic, as such the need for alternate flyover road cannot be ignored.  Besides, huge expenses have been incurred by the D.H.A. on a project which is for the ultimate benefit of the people.  As such we are not inclined to order for stopping the construction process of the said project.  At the same time we will like to direct the Defence Housing Authority to undertake the submission of EIA after properly inviting objections, if any, from the residents of said area, strictly in accordance with the provisions of section 12 of the act, as well as the relevant provisions of the Pakistan Environmental  Protection Agency (Review of IEE and EIA) Regulations, 2000.

Learned counsel for petitioners had referred to Articles 4,5,9, 14 and 25 of the Constitution of Pakistan, while stating that their rights as envisaged under the said Articles, were infringed due to commencement of the construction of the flyover.  There is no cavil to the propositions of the Constitution are protected. However, at the same time was cannot loose sight of the general welfare and larger interest of the people at large, in the wake f the growing needs of the population, which culminate in the demand of greater number of   roads, flyover, under passes, etc.

So far as the contention of petitioners in C.P No. D-2168 of 2008 to the effect that the scheme of flyover has been amended by way of ending the same in front of Total Petrol Pumps, is concerned, it may be observed that the Government is under obligation to cater genuine requirements of the people, besides complying with the provisions of law.  Suffice it to say, that if the need may arise, the Government may acquire ay land under the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act 1894, if the same acquisition of land is in interests of general public.

In view of the foregoing discussion, these petitions are disposed of in the terms that the construction work of the proposed flyover, being a project of public importance and meant for welfare of people shall be continued. however the D.H.A. shall be required to fulfil all the legal requirements as envisaged in section 12 of the Pakistan Environmental protection Act, 1977, as well as the relevant provisions of the Pakistan  Environmental Protection Agency (Review of IEE and EIA) Regulations, 2000, inclusive of the submission of  Environmental impact Assessment before Government Agency, and in case of any negative findings in the same EIA, the D.H.A. shall be liable to any legal consequences, besides being liable to make suitable compensation to any affected persons, strictly in accordance with the relevant provision of law. [p. 704] H,I,J & K

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