KARACHI: The Sindh High Court has thrown out a petition challenging a selective ban imposed by the provincial government on hunting during the 2022-23 season.

A two-judge bench headed by Justice Yousuf Ali Sayeed dismissed the petition in limine for being misconceived.

A lawyer along with some other petitioners impugned a notification issued on Oct 27 by the provincial forest and wildlife department stating that the ban was selectively imposed on the hunting of native game birds and water fowls.

They contended that the notification was discriminatory since the hunting was disallowed thereunder only in respect of category A whereas categories B and C had been left open.

The bench in its order noted that the notification in question itself reflected that there were three categories of hunt.

The Category A related to hunting of native game birds and water fowls with a gun in accordance with the code of conduct defined under Rule 62; Category B related to trophy hunting at non-protected community lands and Category C related to falconry at deserts and hilly plains, the bench said, adding that all of them were regarded as distinct and different categories with no overlap.

The notification further stated that certain field reports had been received from the respective wildlife divisions in the wake of the widespread floods, which had beset the province recommending a ban on game bird hunting during the upcoming season, it added.

The bench observed that the matter was placed before the chief minister and then made part of the agenda of the meeting of the provincial cabinet held on Oct 11, which accorded approval for such a ban.

“Having considered the matter, we are of the view that no case of discrimination stands made out on that basis as the notification is self explanatory, with there being no correlation between the various categories, nor has it even been suggested that the ban on Category (A) is being imposed selectively,” it concluded.

Kamal gets interim bail

An accountability court on Saturday granted interim pre-arrest bail to Pak Sarzameen Party chairman Syed Mustafa Kamal in a case pertaining to alleged illegal amalgamation of commercial land.

Judge Suresh Kumar granted him bail subject to furnishing a surety of Rs500,000 till Dec 10.

Recently, the Supreme Court had directed Mr Kamal and other eight accused persons to apply for ‘fresh’ anticipatory bail before the trial court following recent amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance, 1999. The NAB had challenged pre-arrest bail of the accused persons granted by the Sindh High Court in July 2019.

Published in Dawn, December 4th, 2022

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