Suo moto notice cannot be taken by high courts, according to the SC

The country’s high courts were not permitted to use their authority to accept suo moto notices, the Supreme Court of Pakistan declared on Tuesday.

The decision was made by a bench under the leadership of Justice Ijazul Ahsan in response to a petition challenging the Peshawar High Court’s (PHC) directive to the provincial administration to form a committee to assess the prices of livestock and poultry products.

The Supreme Court alone was authorised by Article 184/3 of the Constitution to take suo moto notice, hence the supreme court declared the PHC’s judgement in the suo moto case invalid.

Justice Ijazul Ahsan stated that high courts were permitted to consider cases involving the prices of commodities in his eight-page ruling. He noted that the PHC had used its suo moto notice authority more than once, as it had previously prohibited the export of poultry products.

The high court not only took suo moto notice but also meddled in administrative operations, it added. “The authority to import and export products is not with the court but with the administration solely.”

The top court reversed the PHC’s judgement banning the export of poultry products in September of last year. A two-judge panel made up of Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi decided on M/s Sadiq Poultry (Pvt) Ltd’s appeals against the PHC’s verdict.

Written by Aly Bukshi

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