ISLAMABAD: The grandsons of the late Baloch nationalist leader, Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, have withdrawn the case over a dispute with the Oil and Gas Development Company Limited being heard by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) regarding hiring of land, apparently after an out-of-court settlement with the OGDCL.
However, the settlement following the support of Jamhoori Wattan Party (JWP) chief Nawabzada Shahzain Bugti to the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government may lead to further litigation as another resident of Sui tehsil of Dera Bugti district, Ghulam Mohammad, has claimed that Shahzain has transferred his property at Uch oil field to get royalty.
Senator Sarfraz Bugti also tweeted in support of Ghulam Mohammad and urged the authorities to look into this matter. He tweeted: “I request PM @ImranKhanPTI and Petroleum Minister @OmarAyubKhan to intervene and address the concern of Mr Ghulam Muhammad regarding the suspected illegal acquisition of his property by Shahzain Bugti and Gohram Bugti. OGDCL should not become a party to such an arrangement.”
It may be mentioned that Shahzain Bugti on June 24 gave an ultimatum to the government to fulfil the ‘promises’; however, on June 28 he retracted the decision of not attending a dinner hosted by Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Further litigation likely as a man claims Shahzain has transferred his property to get royalty
He said that federal ministers had approached him to attend the dinner but he told them to fulfil the promise they had made. Finally, Shahzain Bugti withdrew the appeal against the OGDCL on July 2.
Last year, Shahzain had lost the case against the OGDCL.
His petition said that the respondents on Jan 28, 2011, signed a deal for the lease of his land in Dera Bugti. According to the agreement, the OGDCL has to pay Rs125 million till date, but it kept delaying the matter.
The petition alleged that the payment to the petitioners had been delayed as respondent authorities were interested in receiving illegal financial gains under the table.
OGDCL representatives told the court that the petitioners wanted the government to acquire the land on lease much beyond the requirements. OGDCL lawyer Kashif Ali Malik had argued that Shahzain Bugti and Chakar Bugti had entered into an agreement to lease out 3,300 acres cultivable and 1,000 acres uncultivable land for a period from Jan 1, 2003 to Dec 31, 2005 and the agreement was revived at different points of time.
He said the OGDCL had in 2016 issued notices to the petitioners for de-hiring of 2,500 acres unnecessary land which was not required by the lessee company.
Published in Dawn, July 5th, 2020