PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court has ordered the Peshawar district administration to hand over possession of a piece of land acquired for setting up a girls’ campus of Zamung Kor, a rehabilitation institution for destitute children.

A two-member bench consisting of PHC Chief Justice Qaiser Rashid Khan and Justice Ijaz Anwar issued notice to the Peshawar deputy commissioner with the direction to ensure that the land in question already acquired for Zamung Kor was handed over to it without any further delay.

The bench also ordered the director general of excise and taxation department and secretaries of health and social welfare departments to sit together and ensure availability of at least two fully equipped ambulances for Zamung Kor in Peshawar within three weeks.

The bench was hearing four different petitions on issues related to social welfare and human rights, especially those of children. The bench fixed November 9 for next hearing.

PHC also orders officials to provide two ambulances to institution for rehabilitation of destitute children

In March this year, the court directed the social welfare department to submit details of different welfare homes for street children and the steps taken for their betterment.

An assistant director of Zamung Kor, Syed Umar Ali Shah, submitted a report, stating that the government launched the project for the rehabilitation of street children and orphans in Peshawar and was acquiring buildings and land in other districts, too, for the purpose.

He stated that a girls’ campus of the institution was set up in Mathra area in a rented building in which both vocational training and formal education were imparted to children.

Mr Shah said that a piece of land measuring 50 kanals was acquired by government for construction of girls’ campus but its possession was yet to be handed over to the institution by the district administration.

He stated that another piece of land measuring 65 kanals and 14 marlas in Matta tehsil of Swat was handed over to the administration of Zamung Kor by the provincial government where construction work was under way for setting up a campus.

He stated that presently there was only one ambulance with the institution, which did not fulfil the requirements during emergency.

The additional advocate general, Syed Sikander Hayat Shah, appeared for the provincial government whereas an assistant attorney general, Ashfaq Ahmad Daudzai, represented the federal government.

One of the petitions is filed by a lawyer Malik Mohammad Ajmal against the increasing number of drug addicts with a request to issue directions to the federal and provincial governments to take steps for their rehabilitation and to prevent the supply of narcotics to them.

The petitioner also requested the court to direct the provincial government to prevent begging on the streets and rehabilitate beggars, especially children and women.

Another petition is filed by a lawyer Saifullah Muhib Kakakhel against begging by poor children and labour work and their sexual exploitation with a request for handing over of such children to child protection and welfare institutes.

The petitioner requested the court to issue directives to different government functionaries, including the provincial chief secretary and inspector general of police, to initiate crackdown on vagrants, drug addicts and children at risk, bring them before the relevant court and hand over children at risk to the child protection institutes for their welfare.

Also, Advocate Fakhr-i-Alam Jhagra filed a petition, seeking the provision of different rights to children, including their access to education.

Another petition is filed by Mohammad Naeem about the rehabilitation of drug addicts. He was represented by lawyer Noor Alam Khan.

Published in Dawn, September 26th, 2022

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