LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Tuesday asked a petitioner’s counsel to cite a law on the next hearing that permitted the court to pass an order for online examination.

Justice Jawad Hassan observed that he had already issued a verdict allowing the government to hold examinations under Covid-19-compliant SOPs.

The counsel for the petitioner argued that all over the world the examinations were being held online due to the pandemic. He said Pakistan should also follow the same policy.

He pointed out that the University of Engineering & Technology (UET) was not holding online examinations, which could be dangerous for the students. He asked the court to order the UET to hold online exams.

The judge repeatedly asked the counsel to cite a law which allowed the court to pass such an order to the government. However, the counsel failed to come up with an answer to the satisfaction of the court.

Justice Hassan observed with regret that he always requested the lawyers to not appear in his court unprepared.

The judge gave an opportunity to the lawyer asking him to attend the court on Wednesday (today) with full preparation. “If you convince the court with arguments, a notice can be issued on the petition,” Justice Hassan said to the counsel.

Last week, the judge had dismissed a petition against the Punjab Public Service Commission for holding examinations for different posts.

A candidate had filed the petition pleading that every year PPSC held exams in December but they had been scheduled for September without intimating to the candidates.

He said all the candidates were unable to prepare for exams because educational institutions, coaching centres, libraries and academies were closed due to Covid-9.

The judge had observed that the government could hold the examinations with strict observance of the SOPs.

pilots: Two more commercial pilots on Tuesday approached the Lahore High Court against their suspension by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Petitioners Amir Mehmood Malik and Syed Mohsin Ali Zaidi in their separate petitions contended that they have been serving the Pakistan International Airline for decades with valid licences. They said the CAA director general (DG) suspended their licences without giving them an opportunity of hearing.

They also challenged the aviation rules which empower the DG to hear appeals against his own actions. They asked the court to set aside the impugned decision of their suspension and the rules of the violation for being unconstitutional.

Justice Jawad Hassan will take the petitions on Wednesday.

Published in Dawn, August 19th, 2020

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