SC ordered Punjab govt to complete orange line project while dismissing LHC decision

The Supreme Court (SC) on Friday set aside the decision of the Lahore High Court (LHC) to halt construction of the Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT), ordering the Punjab government to resume work on the project subject to certain conditions.

The much-awaited judgment was announced by Justice Ijazul Ahsan on the multi-billion dollar train project almost eight months after the bench reserved its verdict on the matter in April. Justices Ejaz Afzal Khan, Sheikh Azmat Saeed, Maqbool Baqar and Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel were also part of the larger bench which heard the case.

The bench had taken up identical petitions filed by the Punjab government, National Engineering Services Pakistan (Nespak), Punjab Mass Transit Authority, Lahore Development Authority and Civil Society Network against Aug 19, 2016, LHC judgment suspending construction work on OLMT within 200 feet of 11 heritage sites in the provincial capital.

The apex court today ordered the Punjab government to resume construction on the train project and complete it by the planned date.

The court also directed the provincial government to form two technical committees within 30 days to oversee technical aspects of the project.

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