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Who’s aggrieved by Farah Dogar case verdict, asks IHC

ISLAMABAD: A division bench of Islamabad High Court while hearing an intra-court appeal against its verdict in the Farah Dogar case on Monday directed the lawyers of the appellants to explain who had been aggrieved by the decision of the court.

The bench comprising Justice Mohammad Munir Paracha and Justice Raja Saeed Akram Khan raised three points while hearing the appeal of Mohammad Azam Khan Sultanpuri.

Who is the ‘aggrieved person’ according to the law; whether or not the rules enacted by the board under the Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education Act 1975 for rechecking/evaluation are ultra vires to the constitution, and under general principle what are the powers of a chief executive officer.

In reply, Advocate Sultanpuri said the whole nation was aggrieved in this case as addition of one mark meant change of position obtained by different students and denying many others their chances to meet the required merit for admission. Justice Paracha told the appellant that except for a writ of quo warranto, nobody other than the affected person could be an aggrieved party.

The lawyer said the chief justice in his decision had quoted rule 1.5(a) of the examination rules of FBISE in his detailed judgment, whereas it was clearly mentioned in the said rule that there was no possibility of the re-evaluation but of re-checking.

Farah Dogar, the daughter of the chief justice of Pakistan, first applied for rechecking of her papers and a single mark was added to the grand total of her marks. Later, she applied for re-evaluation of her papers and 20 additional marks were awarded to her, that is unprecedented, the appellant said. The chairman of the FBISE at that time had himself written that he wanted to see the papers by himself, he said.

Mr Sultanpuri told the court that whatever the case, laws the counsel of Ms Dogar referred to before the court had no mention of re-evaluation in the examination. Quoting two judgments, one of Supreme Court 1996 and another of the high court, Mr Sultanpuri said there was no possibility of re-evaluation.

Justice Paracha said there was not even a single judgment where it might have been argued before the court that re-evaluation was ultra vires to the constitution.

The defence council, former attorney general of Pakistan, Malik Mohammad Qayyum told the court that Mr Sultanpuri was neither himself an aggrieved person nor any of his siblings was. It is just to malign some people, he added.

He said the chancellor of Punjab University had the powers to order re-evaluation of papers and the intermediate boards had also inherent powers as per rules to do so.

The court after issuing notices to the FBISE to submit reply adjourned the hearing till February 11.
Source: Dawn