PESHAWAR: The Peshawar High Court has appointed the representatives of the University of Peshawar (UoP) and the Peshawar University Teachers Association (Puta) for temporarily managing the affairs of the Teachers Community Centre and allied facilities on campus.

Justice Syed Arshad Ali of a single-member bench issued the order while hearing the plea of the Puta for an interim relief against the decision of the university’s senate to credit the income of TCC and allied facilities, which were under control of the association at that time, to the university’s fund instead of any other account.

After both Puta and UoP proposed their nominees, the bench disposed of the petition ordering the appointment of Puta finance secretary Dr Amjad Amin and additional treasurer of the university Mazharullah as the “joint managers and receivers” for the day-to-day affairs of the TCC.

Lawyer Saifullah Muhib Kakakhel appeared for the Puta, whereas the university was represented by advocate Waseemuddin Khattak and its law officer, Riaz Ali Khan.

Declares dispute over TCC will be decided by civil court

The bench declared that the bank account would be operated by those managers together.

“The managers will be responsible for the overall supervision of TCC and the allied facilities. They will perform their duties to the best of their abilities but in the interest of the TCC and University of Peshawar,” it declared.

The court declared that profits, sums and other amounts received in the name of TCC should be deposited in that bank account and all expenses of the TCC should be paid from the account which would include the salaries of employees, utility bills, POL for backup generator, cleanliness and day to day purchases for TCC.

It directed those managers to provide a monthly reconciliatory statement of the account to the trial court, which has been hearing the main suit of the Puta, on a monthly basis.

The bench ruled that the said arrangement would be subject to the final judgment of the trial court.

The bench observed that both managers were expected to perform their duty honestly but if any party was aggrieved by any decision of the managers or there was a dispute between them over any issue, it should be referred to the trial court for decision. It asked the trial court to decide the “urgent matter” within four months.

The controversy emerged after the university’s senate decided that the income of the TCC and allied facilities should be credited to the university fund instead of any other account and the university should reflect the income as well as expenditure therefrom in the annual budget for the financial year 2022.

Aggrieved by the decision, the Puta moved a civil court, which accepted its plea for temporary injunctions (stay order) and restrained the university from taking over the TCC for being in the petitioner’s domain.

However, the order was reversed by an appellate court on the appeal of the university. The association challenged the decision in the high court.

During the PHC hearing, both parties agreed that as a temporary arrangement a manager be appointed with the consensus of the parties with certain ToRs.

The counsel argued that it is the syndicate which had given the property and the money for construction of the same since its in their power but the senate of the university has no jurisdiction over it.

In the lawsuit, the association had contended that it was a statutory body and got a property in 1990 and more in 2012.

It added that it collected funds from the government and by own resources to put up the Puta Hall, a gymnasium, common hall and TCC along with a cafe for teachers.

Published in Dawn, March 25th, 2023

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