A view of the Sindh High Court building. — Photo by Reuters

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Monday issued notices to Ayub Qazi, the Principal Secretary to Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf, and others for Feb 14 for allegedly interfering in the Baldia factory fire case, DawnNews reported.

A local NGO had filed a petition in the court requesting it to take notice of interference from Prime Minister Ashraf in the Baldia factory fire case and had asked the SHC to declare the alleged intrusion as illegal.

The case filed against the owners of fire-struck garment factory in Karachi's Baldia Town was withdrawn on the prime minister’s discretion, State Minister for Finance Salim Mandviwalla had said on Jan 23.

The petitioner argued that the prime minister had acted in violation of the Constitution and the decision to withdraw the murder case was against provincial autonomy.

After hearing the petitioner's arguments, Justice Maqbool Baqir of the SHC issued notices to Qazi, the Sindh government, Inspector General Sindh Police Fayyaz Leghari, the owners of the fire-struck factory and others to appear in court on Feb 14  and submit their replies.

The fire at the garment factory had claimed at least 258 lives in September last year.